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Wedding lessons

My husband and I attended a lovely wedding last night, in a room filled with long-time married couples. It struck me that really no other decision -- not even the profession you choose -- determines how your life plays out. You and a spouse or partner choose where to live, if and when to have children, what friends you'll hang around with. When you marry you inherit a bunch of other family members. Even if you divorce, the marriage carries on its influence in the rest of your life, especially if you have children together. And at the beginning of a marriage, romantic love blinds you to the lifelong implications. Maybe that is a good thing. The couples we knew at the wedding who had been together 30, 40 years or more hit the dance floor with gusto. They have had their struggles, their joys and, I'm sure, their doubts, but at the wedding we all danced the dance of commitment.

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Spokesman-Review features writer Rebecca Nappi, along with writer Catherine Johnston of Olympia, Wash., discuss here issues facing aging boomers, seniors and those experiencing serious illness, dying, death and other forms of loss.