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"At age 70, I did not imagine that I would fall in love again and remarry."

So begins an emotional and poignant personal essay from former U.S. Senator Harris Wofford published in The New York Times on Sunday.

The story Wofford tells is one of two loves, growing old, history, and a changing of tides.


Wofford campaigning for Barack Obama in 2008. Photo by Jeff Swensen/Getty Images.

On Jan. 3, 1996, Harris Wofford lost his wife, Clare, to leukemia.

They had been married 48 years; "a lifetime together," he wrote. When Clare died, Wofford felt lucky to be alive and grateful to have a job where he could serve his country, but understandably, he felt lost as well.

Wofford and Usher (!!!) at a hearing on improving America's commitment to service and volunteerism. Photo by Photo by Paul Morigi/Getty Images.

"I wondered what it would be like living by myself for the rest of my life. I was sure I would never again feel the kind of love Clare and I shared," Wofford wrote.

Yet, at age 75, Wofford found love again.

According to Wofford, he was standing alone on a beach in Florida when he was approached by two men who came over to say hello. That was when he met then-25-year-old Matthew Charlton.

"As we talked, I was struck by Matthew’s inquisitive and thoughtful manner and his charm," wrote Wofford. "I knew he was somebody I would enjoy getting to know. We were decades apart in age with far different professional interests, yet we clicked."

Pretty soon, the two were touring Europe together and meeting each other's families. In time, Wofford's children welcomed Charlton as part of their family, and Charlton's family did the same for Wofford.


Wofford was awarded the Presidential Citizens Medal in 2012 for his service to the country. Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images.

As of Sunday, Wofford and Charlton have been together for 15 years. Soon, they'll be getting married.

"On April 30, at ages 90 and 40, we will join hands, vowing to be bound together: to have and to hold, for better for worse, for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, until death do us part."

There are many reasons why Wofford's story about his second great love is so notable: his age, his history, his career in politics, his romance-novel courtship of Matthew — to name a few.

Perhaps the most remarkable part of this story, however, is the fact that Wofford was born in 1926, long before there was an active LGBT rights movement and a time when doctors still treated homosexuality as a mental illness.

Despite decades of socially-constructed ideas about gender and sexuality, Wofford has embraced love for what it is: something beautiful, something unpredictable, and something that is for everyone.


Wofford was 89 when the Supreme Court declared same-sex marriage the law of the land. Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images.

Wofford knows that something as simple and as complicated as love can't be put in a box and labeled.

For 48 years, he loved a woman, and now he loves a man. It doesn't mean he's a different person or that his 48-year marriage to Clare wasn't special. It simply means he's not afraid to love who he loves.

"I had a half-century of marriage with a wonderful woman and now am lucky for a second time to have found happiness."

Frankly, we should all be so lucky.

Education

Teacher of the year explains why he's leaving district in unforgettable 3-minute speech

"I'm leaving in hopes that I can regain the ability to do the job that I love."

Lee Allen

For all of our disagreements in modern American life, there are at least a few things most of us can agree on. One of those is the need for reform in public education. We don't all agree on the solutions but many of the challenges are undeniable: retaining great teachers, reducing classroom size and updating the focus of student curriculums to reflect the ever-changing needs of a globalized workforce.

And while parents, politicians and activists debate those remedies, one voice is all-too-often ignored: that of teachers themselves.

This is why a short video testimony from a teacher in the Atlanta suburb of Gwinnett County went viral recently. After all, it's hard to deny the points made by someone who was just named teacher of the year and used the occasion to announce why he will be leaving the very school district that just honored him with that distinction.

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Joy

Tea time: how this boutique blends cultures from around the world

Ethically sourced, modern clothes for kids that embrace adventure, inspire connections and global thinking.

The Tea Collection combines philanthropic efforts with a deep rooted sense of multiculturalism into each of their designs so that kids can grow up with global sensibilities. They make clothes built to last with practicality and adventure in mind. But why "Tea"?

Let's spill it. Tea is a drink shared around the world with people from all different cultures. It is a common thread that weaves the world together. The Tea Collection was born from a love of travel and a love of sharing tea with different people in different places. Inspired by patterns from around the world, these clothes help children develop a familiarity with global communities.

Tea sources their materials ethically and ensures that each of their partners abide to strict codes of conduct. They have a zero-tolerance policy for anything "even slightly questionable" and make sure that they regularly visit their manufacturing partners to ensure that they're supporting positive working conditions.

Since 2003, The Tea Collection has partnered with the Global Fund for Children and has invested in different grassroots organizations that create community empowered programs to uplift kids in need. They donate 10% of their proceeds and have already contributed over $500,000 to different organizations such as: The Homeless Prenatal Program (San Francisco, CA, USA), Door of Faith Orphanage (Baja California, Mexico), Little Sisters Fund (Nepal) and others in Peru, Sri Lanka, India, Italy and Haiti.

But the best part about the Tea Collection? They're also an official member of the Kidizen Rewear Collective, which believes that clothes should stretch far beyond one child's use. They have their own external site for their preloved clothes that makes rewearing affordable. Families can trade in gently used Tea clothes and receive discounts for future products. Shopping the site helps keep clothes out of land fills and reduces the environmental impact of the fashion industry.

By creating heirloom style clothing made to last families can buy, sell, and trade clothes that can be reworn again and again. Because "new to you" doesn't always have to mean never been worn. And let's be honest, we all know how fast kids grow! Shopping preloved clothes is a great way to keep styles fresh without harming the environment or feeling guilty about not getting the most out of certain styles.

But don't just take our word for it! Head over to the Tea Collection and see for yourself!

Upworthy has earned revenue through a partnership and/or may earn a portion of sales revenue from purchases made through links on our site.

Hold on, Frankie! Mama's coming!

How do you explain motherhood in a nutshell? Thanks to Cait Oakley, who stopped a preying bald eagle from capturing her pet goose as she breastfed her daughter, we have it summed up in one gloriously hilarious TikTok.

The now viral video shows the family’s pet goose, Frankie, frantically squawking as it gets dragged off the porch by a bald eagle—likely another mom taking care of her own kiddos.

Wearing nothing but her husband’s boxers while holding on to her newborn, Willow, Oakley dashes out of the house and successfully comes to Frankie's rescue while yelling “hey, hey hey!”

The video’s caption revealed that the Oakleys had already lost three chickens due to hungry birds of prey, so nothing was going to stop “Mama bear” from protecting “sweet Frankie.” Not even a breastfeeding session.

Oakley told TODAY Parents, “It was just a split second reaction ...There was nowhere to put Willow down at that point.” Sometimes being a mom means feeding your child and saving your pet all at the same time.

As for how she feels about running around topless in her underwear on camera, Oakley declared, “I could have been naked and I’m like, ‘whatever, I’m feeding my baby.’”

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