This past weekend was bitter and sweet for me and my family. We saw the ugly face of death trying to take over a loved one, and at the same time over joyed with a new addition to the family. When I saw life and death battling one another right in front of me, I came to realize a whole new appreciation as an Aunt and a niece.
I have been an Aunt since my first niece was born in 2010, and that’s when I remember my life changing as I had some one else to love and care for. At the same time, I was only thirteen myself and I did not see the true blessing that was in front of me. Fast forward to 2013 and I was blessed with a nephew. I remember being over joyed and filled with excitement but again I was only 16, and although I understood the impact of another child in the family, I was still naïve and young about/for the whole situation. This year I learned that my other sister was going to have her first child and I felt her excitement as the smile spread across her face while she told me the news. She was not trying at this point in time, but everything happens for a reason and her pure happiness is something I’ll never forget. Because I was older, this time I was able to be an actual part of the pregnancy, I went to doctor appointments and ultrasound appointments and was there as soon as she told me she went into labor. I stayed overnight at the hospital the first night and showered the baby with love and pictures the next day.
I realized that being an Aunt is being a best friend, a care taker, and a number one fan. Everyone jokes about how having nieces/nephews are the best because you get the experience and memories but get to hand them back to mom/dad at the end of the day: what if you never what the time shared to end? That is what this past weekend taught me. The behaviors of my niece and nephew that would agitate the hell out before are now nothing. Almost loosing a family member that is so incredibly dear to my heart, has made all the annoying parts of family acceptable. I realized that life can change so incredibly quick and to not only be there as a supporter of them, but to let my family members be there for me as well, and to not push them away for whatever reason.
So bottom line is, the best part of being an Aunt, is being able to shower nieces/nephews with love and support, being able to spend time and build memories, being able to teach them, and being a friend when they needed one. I am an Aunt again, I cannot wait to watch the baby grow and be annoyed by her, all of it, the good and bad are a great gift of life. I could not be more thankful for the blessings I have been graced with.