My grandparents met in the 1930s when they were about sixteen, and I have never known two people more in love than they were. They would do everything together, even simple tasks like going to the post office or taking the trash out together. My Papa began writing my Granny love letters, and I never knew that until we found them in their house after my Granny passed away. Some of the letters are hard to read, others you can clearly make out, but the statement is always clear. My Papa loved my Granny with every piece of him. One of my favorite lines is "your sweetheart, I hope", my Granny was a looker in her days, and she probably had more than one man chasing after her. But she married my Papa, and they stayed married for sixty years until his death in 2008.
Growing up, my brothers and I never had to go to a babysitter, we'd go to Granny and Papa's when Mom and Dad were working or going out. They lived ten minutes down the road, and some of my favorite childhood memories are from their house. I had never seen a couple so devoted to one another like they were. When I was in the second grade, my Papa was badly burned in an accident when he was setting a field on fire to prep it for planting. He was med flighted to VCU Medical Center and had to have his right leg amputated. It was a really long and hard recovery for him, and the entire time, my Granny was by his side. Through his hospital stays, his surgeries, his physical therapy, and finally when he was able to come home. She never left his side. Their love for one another always left me amazed that two people can be together that long and still find joy in being together. When my Papa died, I know my Granny lost her soulmate, she wasn't the same but she kept going, for eight years until she died in 2016. Wherever their spirits are resting, I know my Papa shook his head at her when they finally met again and said: "what took you so long?".
I can feel my Papa's love for Granny through his letters to her, and when I read them it's as if they're still here. To me these letters are some sort of time capsule, they captured the love my Papa had for my Granny in notebook pages, hidden away from the world until 2016. She never showed them to me, and even my Dad didn't know they existed until we found them while cleaning out her house. We took them home, and I really want to get a few framed one day with a picture of them in the center for my Dad to have one day. The letters now sit in my Mom's desk, and I love to read them when I'm home.
I have always wanted a relationship like theirs. If there was ever a relationship to model my own after, it would have to be theirs. The level of devotion and love they had for each other while on this Earth was something I always admired growing up. An old fashioned kind of love that grows from the ground up, that is fought for, that you struggle through, and that you stick together no matter what life throws your way. A love that can be captured on a piece of paper and survive anything. Something timeless.