Tiny Love Stories: ‘We Were So Fit, So Young, So Beautiful’

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Clubbing With My Mother

I was at the club with my mother. Earlier that day, I had moved back in with her. Single, 31, living with my mother and even clubbing together, I was surfing the unique freedom that comes with having nothing left to lose. It was the highest low. I was sad and thrilled. Figuratively and literally dancing as if no one was watching. I thought I saw someone watching, though. Now, a few months later, I’m moving in with him. — Maria-Cristina Trepcea

She Laughed Big

She lived for 56 years, 26 of them with me. She died. I live. No one in the world laughed like she did: big, loud, head turning. Easy to remember. What a blessing. — Elizabeth Hutchins

I Miss That Too-Small Bed

The antique hotel bed that my wife and I shared to celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary wasn’t designed for a 6-foot-3 individual like me. Measuring 6 by 6 feet and boasting an oversize footboard, the bed made it impossible for me to stretch my legs. Yet 48 years later, those cramped quarters beckon. Was it the cheap Champagne, the laughter or the scrunched lovemaking that make that night so vivid? We were so fit, so young, so beautiful. At 68, I miss this younger version of us and the time we shared in that decrepit, too-small bed. — Al Miles

An Opening in the Fence

The day we buried our father, the eccentric neighbor who had terrified us as children appeared at our mother’s door. He grunted condolences with a shake of his head: “A good man, a bloody good man.” As our mother’s billowing grief subsided over the years, we noticed that a section of the fence between her yard and his had disappeared. A path developed. For two decades, that path mapped the unlikeliest of friendships and led to a quiet, unexpected love. Our neighbor won’t walk that path again. Our mother grieves for another bloody good man. — Kate Murphy

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