Tomorrow is Auntie’s Day.
Let me tell you how I came to know about Auntie’s Day. There is an amazing woman named Melanie Notkin who started this wonderful revolution of Aunts. Her website Savvy Auntie is filled with a wealth of information for all Aunts of any style. Although Aunts have been aunting for generations, for the first time we have been given a platform to express how much we adore the children in our lives – even if we do not happen to have our own.
I come from a long line of Aunts and on October 11, 2007 I became an Aunt myself. Here is a picture of the lovely face that changed my life!
I obviously knew that she was coming – I had known she was on her way for nine months. I walked into the hospital room when she was about 30 minutes old and we made eye contact and I took this picture. This is the exact moment I became an aunt. I hadn’t felt connected to her at all until right here. Suddenly here was this little dark haired girl who I didn’t know! I wondered who she would become, what she would be like, what kind of things she would say. My life changed when this little face looked at me.
We started on a journey, she and I, and it didn’t take long for her become a blonde and start talking!
Before I knew it – She was two years old! Even at two years old she knew that going to Auntie’s house meant Backyardigans would be on TV and eating donuts out of the bag was okay!
These days, we’re closing in on four years old. She’s counting in Spanish, learning to read and write, counting down the days until she can ride a school bus, and what kind of lunch box she’ll carry (Tinkerbell, she says). She even announced at lunch not long ago that she’d like a cell phone for her birthday. “An iPhone” she was quick to add to her request. Being a Savvy Auntie, I will not be getting her a cell phone for her birthday – nice try, little girl 😉
The day is to recognize those wonderful women in our lives who “aunted” us in ways that our own mothers could never parent us. I personally had three aunts, however my relationship with them was different then my relationship with my niece. Not that they weren’t around, it was quite the opposite! My dad’s sister had a baby boy a mere 29 days after I was born. Together he and I soaked up our family’s attention. On the other side of the family – my mom’s brother and sister-in-law welcomed a son into the family just seven months after I entered the world. At least on my mom’s side of the family I held the title of “newest addition” for seven whole months! My mom’s sister already had two sons when I came screaming onto the scene and had another a couple of years later.
Got my family history down? In total, I was preceded by seven boys and one girl and was followed by four more boys and two more girls. That’s both sides of my family in a nutshell! I think. I hope I didn’t leave anybody out! If I did, they’ll never be sure of who it was (and I’ll never tell!)
One of the boys who preceded me, I will never meet. I’ve never asked for a lot of details – I suppose I don’t really want to know how bad it hurt. When my dad was just a teenager, his nephew drowned. He was a toddler, only two or three years old. It’s been 40 years and still a brief mention of his name will silence a room – it’s a tangible silence, evidence of how much pain still lingers.
Whatever situation this Auntie’s Day finds you in – An Aunt with your own little ones, an Aunt without your own little ones, or even a Wanna-be Aunt! Embrace this day, hug the little ones in your life or find little ones who may need a little extra attention today and hug the mess outta them! That’s what aunting is all about! Taking children who are not our own, but loving them as though they are. Happy Auntie’s Day 🙂