Some Unwritten Stories (ms)

Sitting down with the Sunday newspaper is a custom I’ve developed over the years and now is one I can’t go without. Each Sunday morning I plod out to the front lawn and get my paper, bring it inside, pour some coffee and make a long term commitment to reading. There is a social section which I generally breeze through on my way to the weightier pages, like the funnies, but occasionally I stop.

The social section of the paper of course offers news on clubs and events and the like but it also offers photos of newly engaged and newly married couples. Those are the stories that draw my attention.

It is interesting to read where these folks came from, where they work, who their parents are. There are times I find we know the parents so at least a congratulatory card or call is in order. More importantly though is where those couples are going. That’s what I find to be really interesting.

The pictures that accompany the write ups don’t really tell much of a story. All the couples look happy as well they should. Engagement photos ought to reflect one of the happiest times of your life; wedding photos still another but if you think about it there is a story there, behind each photo. The trouble is no one can see it because it hasn’t been lived yet.

There is nothing in those photos to speak of what lies ahead as the years roll by and the happy couple grows old together. There is no real way of explaining to them the heartaches, the joy, the simple pleasures they will almost surely face in their years together. Life can be good but it isn’t cheap and it takes its toll not so much in money as in pain and sorrow giving change with moments of pure enjoyment. In the long run one can hope that the change will add up to a sizable amount so that when its time to cash in there will be a good haul to show for it. Sad indeed to go through life and leave it with only pocket change.

In the faces of the happy couples one can’t find those chapters of broken cars, mortgage payments, children sick in the middle of the night, the first drivers license, a lost job, graduations and the myriad of other things we come across in the act of living. Not all of them are good but then that’s just life. No one ever said it would be easy.

I look at those photos and see couples caught up in the joy of the moment. They’ve been warned, of course, but they’ve ignored the warnings as millions of others have over time – that is as it should be. If we all took those warnings seriously there would be far fewer engagement/wedding photos in the Sunday paper.

So then to all those whose photos appeared in last weeks paper know that I wish you well. Know too that I sincerely hope fifty years from now the same paper in whatever form it is carries photos of all of you still together, still happy and still smiling. It will show that your stories have been written and that they make for good reading.

–Mike Stevens

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~ by admin on June 6, 2011.

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