AN AUNT'S LOVE
Day 3 -
If I made a list of all of the beautiful “things” that have happened to me since March 21, 1998, it would fill a library full of books. List books. Alas, I AM working on a book. It will be more than a list, though. Back to the point. I have had a lifetime full of beauty. In places, in things, in music, in souls, in snugly-sweet pets, in plant-therapy (I made that up, but surely its a thing). One of the most beautiful events happened not long after I got my heart. It was 3 months and 7 days later, to be exact. A beautiful, blue-eyed baby girl was birthed into this world and made me an aunt at age 19.
I have always loved children. Any age. And they tend to love me back. Brothers, babysitting, neighbors, friends’ siblings (friends didn’t love that). Children are cute and fun and just miniature people making their way in this planet. I think its important to advocate for children. And to be their voice. To let them know they are important, not an after-thought. Children should be SEEN and HEARD. They remind us of the pure and simple things that have been lost and forgotten.
Becoming an aunt was the closest thing I had come to being a mom. I mean, I’ve always been a little mommy (to the aforementioned), but this was different. This little person was family. She kinda looked like me. She looked UP to me. She loved me more than any kiddo had before. Ciaran Ruby was “aunt Dawi’s girl” and “best, best, bessssttttuh fwend. I had the privilege of hanging with her often. Sleepovers and shopping and movies. It couldn’t get better. Until it did. Three years later, Ciaran became a big sister to Stylee Violet. I was now the aunt of a blonde, curly-haired, blue-eyed babe, and a red-headed, blue-eyed babe!
We were inseparable. We spent a lot of time together with my folks and friends. One of my best friends/roommate, Kendra, was like another aunt to them. We were in our early 20’s and we weren’t out partying with our peers. We were spending Friday nights watching Disney movies on a pallet of princess blankets on our apartment living room floor. And we wouldn’t have had it any other way.
When Stylee was about 3-4 years old, I overheard her telling someone “my mommy and daddy love me VERY much, but NO ONE loves me more than Aunt Kari because she has TWO hearts!” I was amazed. Amazed by her perception of my love. Amazed by the way she communicated it. Amazed that I had been given not just the gift of life, but a thoroughly abundant, overflowing life. And you know what, I think she was right. I know things change when you are dying. Your perspective and your priorities, naturally. But for me, and this beautiful new ticker, my capacity to love grew immeasurably. I wasn’t the grinch before. I was already a big lover. I love people so much. I love life. But everything was just amplified.
So I thank Ciaran and Stylee for loving their Aunt Kari unconditionally. And thank you, Stylee, for speaking this beauty into my world, giving me the permission and space to see a strength in myself. That being sensitive and empathic is not a burden, but a gift, and one the world needs from me. Thank you, brothers and the girls’ mothers, for making me an Aunt and raising some amazing little (& grown!) people. There were more added to the brood since then. And there is plenty of room in my heart and in my arms for all of my niecie-pies and nephie-poos.
I sure do love love all of you!
With all my heart(s),