Three Stories on Aging Love

Most love stories focus on the beginning, maybe on the demise of love. I've recently become aware of how much I love hearing about love in its old age. Three examples:

1. Modern Love, The Race Grows Sweeter, podcast read by Mary Chapin Carpenter 
I love Modern Love about 75% of the time and love the podcast, where actors read the essays and then the authors discuss them, about 50% of the time. This one was a slam dunk and made me tear up while cleaning my bathroom. It's about a woman who finds love in old age. Mary Chapin Carpenter does a beautiful reading, and talks in the podcast of how much she loves 'old love' (enough to write a song about it).  A quote:
OLD LOVE is different. In our 70s and 80s, we had been through enough of life’s ups and downs to know who we were, and we had learned to compromise. We knew something about death because we had seen loved ones die. The finish line was drawing closer. Why not have one last blossoming of the heart?
I was no longer so pretty, but I was not so neurotic either. I had survived loss and mistakes and ill-considered decisions; if this relationship failed, I’d survive that too. And unlike other men I’d been with, Sam was a grown-up, unafraid of intimacy, who joyfully explored what life had to offer. We followed our hearts and gambled, and for a few years we had a bit of heaven on earth.

2. My Young Man, by Kate Rusby 

I sing Kate Rusby to Jamie as lullabyes a lot. Her songs are beautiful stories and her range is in my wheelhouse. This wonderful song is a woman singing of her aging husband, who is now frail and needy, and how much she still loves and needs him. 

Listen to it.

My young man wears a frown

With his eyes all closed and his head bowed down,
My young man never sleeps.
The rain it falls upon his back
The dust before his eyes is black,
Oft the times, oft the times my young man weeps.

My young man wears a coat,
Once, long ago, a bonnie coat
Which my young man wore with pride.
Now I dress the coat all on his back,
For love for him I will not lack,
But to see it now, that collier's coat, I can't abide.

My young man, where's he gone?
Once in his eyes my whole world shone
Now my young man he looks away.
Man and wife we used to be
Now he's like a child upon my knee
And in my arms I help my young man through the day.

A young girl no more am I
But I shall not weep and I will not cry,
For my young man needs me still.
If someone's watching up above
You'll see how much my dear I love,
So leave him here, I need him now and always will.
Oh if someone's watching up above
You'll see how much my dear I love,
And If he must go, let your best angels keep him well

3. The Notebook
I watched the Notebook on Halloween (classic Halloween movie. . .) for the first time in years and I was reminded that however charming (and steamy!) Ryan Gosling and Rachel McAdams were portraying young love, the real story and true tearjerker was the James Garner/Gena Rowlands telling of old love. What happens when one person outlasts the other, how do they need need and take care of each other. It's inspiring. And the scene where Gena Rowlands remembers and then forgets, James Garner's face is utterly heartbreaking.  I can't find it on YouTube, but I did find this one, which is also sweet.