Monday, May 20, 2013

Monday Morning Musings - Old and Young

Some of my writing in recent years has focused on characters who are much older than the ones I usually write about. While I was taking my morning walk today, I started wondering why that might be and I realized that it is probably because I am closer to those ages than I am to younger protagonists. I can relate to the issues of aging and being on the downside of life. Plus, now that I am of a certain age, I realize that I look at those other older people differently than I did when I was young. Those older people are no longer the grandmother and grandfather I loved dearly but had nothing in  common with except my mother or father.

They are my peers, and I now see that we have lives rich with more than rocking chairs and knitting needles. That is what I have tried to capture in my short story collection, The Wisdom of Ages, and also what I addressed in a short story that is featured on The Story Shack, "To Love Again." It has a lovely illustration done by Monique Lafitte.

The story is about finding love after the death of a spouse. I remember when I was young, when older people lost a husband or wife, they stayed single the rest of their lives. That doesn't happen so much any more, and that is a good thing for those who don't want to spend their later years alone. I wrote about this once before in a short story that was published in the anthology, One Touch, One Glance Anthology of sweet romance stories. That story, New Love, was based loosely on the experience my father had with new love when he was 80, and it proves that there is no age limit on love.

On the other end of the age spectrum are all the young people graduating from college and looking ahead to jobs or graduate school or both. One of our grandsons just graduated, and it was fun to listen to the young people who came to his party as they talked about their dreams and goals for the future.

What are your thoughts on love later in life? Are you celebrating graduations in your families?


cic said...

As an older lady, I have to agree that it's lovely to see older ones getting a second chance at love if they lose their spouse. Why shouldn't they, they have learned so much about love...real love, the enduring kind. It would be a shame to waste that wisdom and depth in loneliness.
In my writing, my heroines tend to be at least middle aged if not older.

LD Masterson said...

I'm hoping I get to hang on to the love I've got for a while yet. But my dad did remarried after my mom died so he took his "second chance".

Marian Allen said...

One of my best friends here in Corydon (she has since passed away) got married FOR THE FIRST TIME in her 80's. No, it's never too late. :)

Marian Allen
Fantasies, mysteries, comedies, recipes

Maryann Miller said...

Interesting, Marian. I was just considering a story with a character who marries for the first time in her 70s. What a neat coincidence.

LD, I hope you father was as happy in his later marriage as my father was. They only had 10 years together, but they were good years.

Cic, you are so right about older people understanding so much more about love. It isn't the blush of first romance, it's that commitment to the long haul.

Patricia Stoltey said...

Love has no age limit, that's for sure. I've enjoyed writing about older characters for quite awhile -- these folks know who they are, have had awesome life experiences, and tell fascinating stories.

Maryann Miller said...

You are right, Patricia. I like the stories I hear from my friends.