A few years ago I was to be at my parent’s place for dinner with my family, but I was late at work and as there was a little girl, my three-year-old niece, waiting for her dinner I told my family to get started without me. Kids don’t seem to be patient when it’s time to eat. As I finally walked through the front door of my parent’s house I called out a greeting to everyone in the dining room. I heard my three-year-old niece say in her little voice to my husband, “Uncle Rick, Uncle Rick, it’s Auntie Gwen, you know . . . your friend.” We, the adults that is, laughed and agreed, yes, Auntie Gwen is Uncle Rick’s friend.
A little while after those sweet words were spoken Rick and I watched the HBO series John Adams. Through the series John Adams, played by Paul Giamatti, always referred to his wife Abigail, played by Laura Linney, as “my friend.” The scene in which Abigail Adams is dying, John Adams is holding her and crying “don’t go away from me, my friend.” She takes her last breath and he cries again, “my friend.” I, of course, was sobbing and my wonderful husband, who is not known to shed tears during movies, paused the movie and reminded me, with tears in his eyes, about what our niece Taylor had said a few months previous. I only nodded as words were impossible at that given time.
And then just the other day, while taking care of Taylor, now seven-years-old, and her four-year-old younger brother, Ryder, she asked me what Rick and I did on dates before we got married. I talked about our lovely hikes and taking pictures, going skating, going out for nice dinners and seeing movies. She loved hearing about all our dates and then said, “Uncle Rick must like you a lot, ’cause he married you.”
Oh, the wisdom of children.
So, here’s to our spouses, partners, significant others. May they always be our friends and may we always be ‘in like’.