Prince Phillip, the Duke of Edinburgh as Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth’s “strength and stay:”

As the world bid farewell to Prince Phillip, the Duke of Edinburgh, here are five plausible interpretations of him as Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth’s “strength and stay:”

  1. He maintained her trust
  2. He kept her secrets
  3. He allowed her ‘shine’
  4. He didn’t exhaust her
  5. Combining the above points, he became a model for all men whose wives desire to be their ‘strength and stay’ too
  1. He maintained her trust

To oil the bolts and nuts of the relationship. To change the oil regularly. All these are metaphors of course but the idea of maintaining her trust connotes effort. It connotes deliberateness. Because we all are creatures of habit and easily given to taking one another for granted, particularly those we share close ties with, when someone makes the extra effort to keep showing the other respect and esteem, away from the klieg lights and media razzmatazz, it becomes a gift of strength indeed. Trust between spouses is a high maintenance gift because of its delicate nature. It is notable for its ability to trigger and amplify other characters placed within the parties. Because he maintained her trust, she never discovered or experienced first-hand the crushing, depleting and disorienting condition of having to live without the precious gift. Like a car engine with full tank, she could go the distance like she has remarkably done.

  1. He kept her secrets

Everyone has secrets. Yet we know why many would crave the secrets of Her Majesty. And why some may have wish to plow with her husband (apologies, Samson) to have access to what should not be one’s business in the first place. Like biblical Samson, who gave a riddle to the men of Timnath, which they could not answer, the legendary institution over which Her Majesty reigns, has puzzled many over the years. Of course, an institution that old and still very influential must pride itself in some secrets.

Keeping the secrets secret means minimizing or completely eliminating vulnerabilities that could be easily exploited. Not expending resources putting out unnecessary fires help conserve strength and composure.

  1. He allowed her ‘shine’

And he didn’t make a meal of this gift. This is actually the more important aspect of the gift. He could have let her ‘shine’ with his ‘head’ sticking out ‘on the stage’ as it were. Some call the phenomenon ‘photo-bombing.’ It is stealing into the show and making yourself a part of it when you were not invited. There are so many ways to ‘gate-crash’ the party in a ‘polite’ way. Yet it looks like he truly let her shine’ imagine how disorienting and energy-sapping it would have been for Her Majesty if she sensed that the Duke was competing with her for the shine, which the throne already conferred on her?

  1. He didn’t exhaust her

Want proof of this? Her age! Noticed her gait too? There could be several explanations for these outcomes, no doubt but spouses who do meaningful work do not know the frustrations of having a spouse that exasperates without let. For a spouse who exasperates the other, almost continually, literally takes away whatever energy is left to do anything meaningful.

  1. Combining the above points, he became a model for all men whose wives desire to be their ‘strength and stay’ too

In a nutshell, this is part of his dominant legacy, which I suppose Her Majesty, would like to commend to all husbands and would-be husbands.

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