Ain’t love grand

Ryan and I have been together for almost three decades, a time during which our relationship has changed.

After being with the same partner for decades, one can’t help but reminisce.

If I venture into the Wayback Machine, I’ll see the dating part we carefully maneuvered through, a heady time when my sweetie pie and I were still strangers who worked hard to impress one another, when I’d primp for every visit, and stare at the phone waiting for the call that said he was still interested. We always looked our best and tried to avoid controversial subjects, still we broke up periodically and always reunited in a few days.

It was exhausting.

Later on, after the shiny-new-romance part dulled a bit, we became more comfortable in each other’s company. We’d do battle over our differing opinions on politics and religion and dealing with relatives—yep, it could get loud around here—each of us standing up for what we believed in.

At some point we decided bickering about things was not productive, so we worked hard to soften those discussions, taking time to consider the other’s opinions, while still sticking to our values. (I’ll confess this part is ongoing and not always easy, but we’re trying.)

Ryan and I have been together for almost three decades now. We’re both retired. We have four kids, with the youngest still home facing her senior year in college. His mother has dementia. His father and step-mom struggle with health issues. My mom will soon be 96. So, it’s family members and our responsibilities to them that now populate our discussions.

Every once in a while, if only for an instant, I miss those wacky, romantic, early days. Though Ry contends he would never go back.

“If you died, I’m done,” he’s said more than once, pointing out that dating is grueling.

And it’s hard to disagree. Listening to our kids—25, 24, 23, and 20—talk about the trials of courting is enough to make me swear off dating forever.

At this point, we both eschew gifts on the supposedly important holidays, as there is nothing we really want or need. He finds joy in cooking. I find joy in writing. We both love scuba diving, traveling, history, British mystery TV shows, and the four-footed furry friends who live with us. What we look like is no longer important. And still the romance remains. It’s just different now.

Here’s an example. We were just in St. Croix on a trip where we could think of nothing we’d rather do than leap into the Caribbean Sea to go diving. But I was still recovering from rotator cuff surgery and was under doctor’s orders to stay out of the water. Still, I told him to go and enjoy himself. When he returned from the dive, he excitedly told me about the tiny peacock flounder he swam with, one of my favorite ocean creatures that has beautiful turquoise spots when swimming but, like a chameleon, changes color instantly to blend in with whatever it alights upon.

Then, he creased his brow and looked down.

“What’s wrong?” I asked.

“It wasn’t any fun without you.”

Ain’t love grand.

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Published by Liaison – A Next Chapter Imprint

Rebecca Quinn escapes her controlling husband and, with nowhere else to go, hops the red-eye to Arizona. There, Gaby Strand – her aunt’s college roommate – gives her shelter at the Salt River Inn, a 1930’s guesthouse located in the wildly beautiful Tonto National Forest.

Becca struggles with post-traumatic stress, but is enthralled by the splendor and fragility of the Sonoran Desert. The once aspiring artist meets Noah Tanner, a cattle rancher and beekeeper, Oscar Billingsley, a retired psychiatrist and avid birder, and a blacksmith named Walt. Thanks to her new friends and a small band of wild horses, Becca adjusts to life in the desert and rekindles her love of art.

Then, Becca’s husband tracks her down, forcing her to summon all her strength. But can she finally stop running away?

Order your copy here:

4 thoughts on “Ain’t love grand

  1. Sherm says:

    You and Ryan are adorable. I’m really ( REALLY!) happy for you. So great to feel your joy. Thanks for sharing. Hope that shoulder is healing.


    • annemontgomeryauthor2013 says:

      I’ll tell him he’s adorable, Sherm. He’ll like that. That said, I am muddling through physical therapy which is rather painful now that they’ve added weights. Still, I know the drill and that recovery is a long slog. Hope all is well. 😉


      • Catherine Castle says:

        When you get it right love is grand. I totally get where you’re coming from. Doing stuff without my hubby, except for the occasional girls’ night out isn’t nearly as much fun as doing it together. Hope you’ll heal fast and can get back to diving soon.


      • annemontgomeryauthor2013 says:

        You do understand, Catherine! I’m looking forward to getting back in the water. 😉


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