|Don and Maxine Simpson in their last moments together.|
“Cause I give you all of me. And you give me all of you…” Lyrics from ‘All of me’
by John Legend dedicated to his wife Chrissy Teigen
The stuff of love and legends could be summed up in music and stories over the years. There’s a reason why some relationships are termed fairytales and stories. Their rarity and essence is hard to digest and encompass by modern day folks who treat any form of love selfishly and with a *conditions applied approach.
I have much to write to the testimony of love that I have understood, read, witnessed and a fraction of which I have been lucky to experience. Yet it would never do absolute justice to the feeling and the actions that went behind expressing them. I think that love is easy to feel and toughest to express. Even when the opposite person knows you love them or how much you love them… they still never quite have the right idea of it and hence are never able to return that love at the same wavelength. Love is also often mistaken with lust, temporary insanity of the heart or available affection. Probably >50% of true love is never reciprocated or expressed in its entirety in a lifetime. I have no qualms telling Abeer I love him almost 8-10 times a day. But when expressing to my parents, I hesitate because we never quite said it out loud. Just embraced or looked at each other and understood so – assumed the other one did too.
I stumbled upon Gordon and Norma Yeager’s story of being married 72 years and passing away within an hour of each other, report in the Dailymail. Followed by Don and Maxine Simpson’ story of wedded bliss for 62 years and passing away within an hour of each other, report in the Mumbai Mirror. Both couples were in their 90s. I looked at their very simple stories of pre-depression, post-depression, pre and post WWII story and their seemingly simple lives. They probably never made headlines or even daily news in their lifetime save for the single most difficult achievement ever – commitment and love till death indeed did them apart, that they had promised each other. Their pictures speak a million words and the simplicity and expression of their love is what’s fascinating as it is devoid of today’s PDA and senseless nudity captured on each and every medium. I could share 1 meaningful kiss in a day and be content but there are those who must near-copulate in public to reflect the same. Gordon-Norma and Don-Maxine’s stories are strewn across social mediums and news media because of the impact their lives had. That it is indeed THAT rare to find that 1 person for you and MAKE it work till the end. Their lives was certainly not a rose garden for 60-70 years. And yet, here they are holding hands and gone already. I knew of only 1 such couple in real life. I knew them as Roy uncle and Aunty. Old Bengali couple in their 50’s or 60’s full of life and so darned beautiful. Roy uncle passed away thanks to his long term parallel love affair with alcohol and smoking. Aunty followed suite because honestly, I couldn’t solve the equation without them not being together. I saw her days before she died and I knew then this was true love. I was less than 10 years old.
John Legend’s song ‘All of me’ has reached the #1 spot in my personal chartbusters bumping off Seal’s ‘Kiss from a Rose’ and 1 Republic’s ‘If I lose myself tonight’ among many others. It tugs the right strings and right notes as I well up each time I listen to it. That’s why I deliberately refrain from listening to it in public as I don’t wish to be a puddle of mush and have to explain why all of a sudden did I need to vent a few tears. The lyrics are powerful and simple ‘All of me and all of you’. Something we DO NOT do anymore. A part of us is at home, part at work, most part in our gadgets and personal effects, part in our relationships, part in ourselves, part divided over and over again everywhere. That’s why we never have 1 place and 1 person to give it all to. Selfishness and insecurity (acc. to me) being the primary factors to hold back and not let someone in your life and share and accept you as YOU ARE or not making enough effort to accept others as they are. It is the single most delightful, relief riddled and exhilarating feeling when you know how much YOU mean to SOMEONE else. And even more that the person felt open and comfortable enough to express it to you, leaving them open and vulnerable aka trusting you to treasure it than destroy it.
I intended to express the song and the 2 love stories. And here I am ~4 paras down. I just hope, wish, pray and beg for this level of rawness, openness and generosity of love in my life as did these people. And I hope that I do not have to stay back and watch it fade away.
Wishful thinking gal…