Jan 28, 2009

A little SHMILY goes a long way....



Most people who know me well know that I am a sucker for little grandmas and grandpas. I just love them. There's something so sweet and beautiful about two people who've spent their lives together loving each other. Nothing brings me to tears quite like when I see them walking in the park,


or holding hands.


My favorite is when they dance together.



My husband and I want to be one of those little old couples some day. It isn't always easy to be in love with the same someone day in and day out. We work hard in our marriage to keep the end in mind when life throws us obstacles like bad attitudes, areas of disagreement and misbehavior toward each other and we strive to work things out to the best of our abilities so our relationship can grow and stay healthy. We often look for opportunities to learn new ways to show each other how important we think the other is. My favorite thing we've learned is "SHMILY".

Once, when reading Dr James Dobson's devotional book Nightlight for Couples together before bed, we read the story of SHMILY. We knew immediately that this was something we would make a part of our relationship with each other. Here is the story behind the word:

SHMILY

Written by Laura Jeanne Allen

My Grandfather and Grandmother were married for over half a century, and played their own special game from the time they had met each other. The goal of their game was to write the word "shmily"
in a surprise place for the other to find. They took turns leaving "shmily" around the house, and as soon as one of them discovered it, it was their turn to hide it once more.

They dragged "shmily" with their fingers through the sugar and flour containers to await whoever was preparing the next meal. They smeared it in the dew on the windows overlooking the patio where they always had warm, homemade pudding with blue food coloring.

"Shmily" was written in the steam left on the mirror after a hot shower, where it would reappear bath after bath. At one point, my Grandmother even unrolled an entire roll of toilet paper to leave
"shmily" on the very last sheet.

There was no end to the places "shmily" would pop up. Little notes with "shmily" scribbled hurriedly
were found on dashboards and car seats, or taped to steering wheels. The notes were stuffed inside shoes and left under pillows.

"Shmily" was written in the dust upon the mantel
and traced in the ashes of the fireplace. This mysterious word was as much a part of their
house as the furniture.

It took me a long time before I was able to fully appreciate my grandparents' game. Skepticism had kept some of them from believing in true love-one that is pure and enduring. However, I never doubted my grandparents' relationship. They had love down pat. It was more than their flirtatious
little games; it was a way of life. Their relationship was based on a devotion and passionate affection
which not everyone is lucky to experience.

Grandma and Grandpa held hands every chance they could. They stole kisses as they bumped
into each other in their tiny kitchen. They finished each other's sentences and shared the daily crossword puzzle and word jumble.

My Grandmother whispered to one of her friends about how cute my Grandfather was, how handsome and old he had grown to be. She claimed that she really knew "how to pick 'em."
Before every meal they bowed their heads and gave thanks, marveling at their blessings:
a wonderful family, good fortune, and each other.

But there was a dark cloud in the couples' life: my Grandmother had breast cancer. The disease had first appeared ten years earlier. As always,
my Grandfather was with her every step of the way.
He comforted her in their yellow room, painted that way so that she could always be surrounded by sunshine, even when she was too sick to go outside.

Now the cancer was again attacking her body. With the help of a cane and my Grandfather's steady hand, they went to church every morning. But my Grandmother grew steadily weaker until, finally,
she could not leave the house anymore. For a while, my Grandfather would go to church alone, praying to God to watch over my Grandmother.

Then one day, what everyone dreaded finally happened. My Grandmother was gone.

"Shmily." It was scrawled in yellow on the pink ribbons of my Grandmother's funeral bouquet. As the crowd thinned and the last mourners turned to leave, my aunts, uncles, cousins and other family members came forward and gathered around Grandma one last time.

My Grandfather stepped up to my Grandmother's casket and, taking a shaky breath, he began to sing to her.

Through his tears and grief, the song came, a deep and throaty lullaby.

Shaking with my own sorrow, I will never forget that moment. I knew that, although I couldn't begin to fathom the depth of their love, I had been privileged to witness its unmatched beauty.

S-h-m-i-l-y:
See How Much I Love You.




I am brought to tears again by their devotion to one another and the satisfaction of their souls being knit together so completely. That's love. That's what I desire.

My husband and I leave little notes to one another every now and then expressing our love for each other and whispering encouraging words, buy none are as special to me as that one tiny, silly word. Shmily. It makes you smile to say it. Shmily has been written on the window, in the snow, on notes stuck inside books or magazines, left in sock drawers, coat pockets, suitcases when one of us left on a trip and the other could not go along, I've left it taped to the dashboard of the car....the list goes on. It is my favorite game. When I am having a bad day, my husband is quick to leave me one-word voicemails that make my entire day brighter. "Shmily" he says.
It's the sweetest word.

2 comments:

Amy (DandelionSeeds) said...

Have you visited SHMILY Time?... gives ideas to SHMILY each other. :) Currently we're praying for 30 days for our hubbies on facebook... you can read more about it on my blog. :)

www.dandelionseeds.com

Melody said...

Yes I have, Amy. Thank you. You have a lovely blog. :)

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