Returning from California where my younger brother – by two years – was married this past weekend, I reflected on the remarkable experience and emotions discovered in a “senior wedding.”
Truthfully, I have not been to many senior weddings in the past, yet each one I attended provided a wonderful spirit of love and commitment. While part of all weddings, the commitment of people in their 60s who elect to get married brings with it…well, more maturity.
Professional reputation has been built. The children have been raised and released into the world. Friendships have been built and nourished over decades. Then, added to all of that comes a strong and intentional passion to marry, again.
I shared with my brother and his beautiful wife a comment I’ve never forgotten from the woman my father married a few years after our mother passed. His new wife, who had survived two previous husbands, shared with me that marriage to our father was wonderfully different because they spent all of their time together.
The “senior marriage” is decidedly not about building a family, it’s about embracing two families. It’s not about building a career or two; it’s about enjoying the fruits of hard work over many years. It’s not about a process of finding yourself; it’s about a process of finding a new future with another.
For two days, my brother and his new wife brought together friends and family. We spoke of how we knew the bride or groom (or, in my case, both…but that is another story). We told stories about their past lives and laughed at experiences familiar to all of us. We truly celebrated a union of two fine people who know themselves and know they are happier, better and more fulfilled together.
Honestly, it was a weekend of pure joy and a sense of wishing the bride, the groom, along with their families and friends nothing but the best in the years they have together….where they really will be together.
This is one senior moment I hope can be shared by every couple finding perfect companionship in their later years.
Craig Fuller served four years in the White House as assistant to President Reagan for Cabinet Affairs, followed by four years as chief of staff to Vice President George H.W. Bush. Having been engaged in five presidential campaigns and run public affairs firms and associations in Washington, D.C., he now resides on the Eastern Shore with his wife Karen.