Married 54 Years: Barbara & Morgan Barokas
What would Barbara do for love? Take two years of summer-school classes if it meant graduating at the same time as high school sweetheart Morgan, who was two years older. The Bellevue, Washington-based pair, who wed when Barbara was 20 and have six grandchildren, are still very much in love. “But to us that doesn’t mean being joined at the hip,” says Barbara, 73. An avowed night owl, she stays up until 2 A.M. reading mysteries, while Morgan, 75, goes to bed early and rises at 4:30 to work out at the gym.Photograph by Gillian Laub
“Treasure the little moments. When I go grocery shopping, Morgan always says, ‘Wait! I’ll go with you!’ His companionship has turned an uninteresting errand into something special. When Morgan was in the hospital last year for kidney problems, I wandered around Costco by myself, thinking how much I missed him,” says Barbara.
“Morgan is my ‘calm down’ person, who tells me everything will be OK when I’m not being rational. And I like to think I put spice and fun into his life that he wouldn’t otherwise have. He thinks I’m nuts!” says Barbara.
“Communication is a big part of our staying married all these years. But as I get older, not being able to hear so much plays a big part, too,” says Morgan.