After being married for 60 years, you’d think your spouse would find it difficult to do anything that would surprise you. But Billie Breland not only managed to surprise her husband of six decades, she did it in a way that touched her husband so deeply that he found hope and comfort in it, even after she had left the earth.
This is the simple, wonderful love story of Billie and Jimmy Breland.
They remained deeply in love with each other.
Jimmy and Billie Breland got married in 1954. Their life was filled with ups and downs, not unlike the rest of us, and many, many blessings. They remained deeply in love with each other, raised their children, and were happy and proud grandparents. After 60 years of being together, Billie passed away in 2015 with her loving husband at her bedside.
A few days after his beloved wife had died, Jimmy began the process of taking care of the heart-wrenching details that always follow a loss such as this. In going through Billie’s things, Jimmy came across a small note, hand-written by Billie. Knowing that Billie had regularly written little notes of reminders for herself throughout her life, Jimmy assumed this would be just another one of those notes. That was not the case. The words that were written were meant for him and brought him consolation as he read:
Please, don’t cry because I died!
Smile because I lived!
Know that I’m in a happy place!
Know that we will meet again!
I’ll see you there!
This is the original:
There was no indication of when Billie had written the note, but it was apparent that she had tucked it away in her checkbook, anticipating that Jimmy would come across it at some point. What does it take to be married for 60 years? This.