Tiny Love Stories: ‘I Was 20 and He Was 60’

“Do you hear it?” the midwife asked. I held a stethoscope to my newborn baby’s heart, I couldn’t hear anything. “Let me try to remove my hearing aids,” I said. “Sometimes they get in the way.” I became a parent and learned that I had hearing loss the same year. Wyn, alert at being a week old, blinked at me. “You may not hear it, but you can feel it,” my husband said. He took the stethoscope, put it in his ears and gently tapped the heartbeat on my thigh – ba-bump, ba-bump – as I held our newborn baby in my arms. † Meggie Schmidt Hollinger

I met Roy when I was 20 and he was 60. My stone-faced mother asked, “Is he rich?” Roy resisted my enthusiasm, saying it would be harder for me to be a couple than for him. All I knew was that it felt better to be with Roy than with anyone else. We shared 30 years. He encouraged my art. I became an honorary 90-year-old to him and his friends – my “uncles.” Roy died 14 years ago; his friends followed. While I’m the last of “our” world (and that way it’s has was harder for me than for him) I’m so, so grateful. † David Schofield

I’m standing on a street corner in San Francisco, hugging a man I don’t know. Pedestrians flock around us, onto the zebra crossing, trying to beat the light. I’ll be back to that river soon, but for now I’m alone and this homeless veteran. When I gave him some money, he said, “Can I have a hug?” I had just left the hotel where I had waltzed with my father at age 14. Now that I felt like an orphan at age 64, I let my grief meet its grief. Thrown out by the country he served, he says, “Everyone needs a hug sometimes.” We cling to dear life. † Rebecca Gummere

With two toddlers underfoot, we took a short trip on the “Maid of the Mist” near Niagara Falls. I hovered above our children, afraid they would fall from the boat among the mass of bodies wrapped in plastic. Far from the romantic vision, I was tired, without makeup and trying to control it all. When I asked our friend to take a family photo, my husband, Jeff, pressed my cheek at the last minute and planted a deliberate kiss. I had been through a loveless marriage before. In that quick, sincere moment, Jeff showed me what love should feel like. † Dana Goldstein

SOURCE : www.nytimes.com

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