Sunday, February 10, 2008
My Best Birthday Gift
When I was a young child, there are certain family members that I remember loving so very much. It was my aunts and my grandma who were my favorites. I was closest to my mom's youngest sister Cathy as a child and young adult. She was only fourteen years old when I was born. I remember as a little girl asking to try on her song girl outfit, sleepovers at her first home when she was a newlywed, hanging out with her at the court house where she worked (and having her and her friends XEROX my face and hands on the printer!) wedding showers and baby showers that she threw for me. I remember at seventeen, driving to the hospital with my girlfriend when she gave birth to her daughter Lindsey. She was the one I would turn to when I desperately needed a babysitter for Meghan and again the one I turned to when I was so heartbroken over mom's cancer. When I had my daughter Meghan, I think my Aunt Cathy was almost as excited as my own mother was. The first ten years of Meghan's life she was a constant fixture. My oldest two children were so blessed to have her around. She just doted on the little ones so much.
Six years ago my aunt and I had a disagreement. I come from a family who has a bad habit of not talking to one another when hurtful words are said. To tell you the truth I don't remember exactly all that was said between us, I just remember being hurt and I am sure that I hurt her too.
We haven't seen each other or talked much for years now.
My aunt has missed out on being a part of my youngest two childrens' lives. That has been so hard for me. No longer do I call to share with her about something funny the kids have done, or said. No longer does she receive calls from my kids inviting her to their birthday parties or school activities. I don't even think my youngest two would know her if they saw her today. In return, I wasn't there for my cousins big days, their graduations or special birthdays. It has been a hurt that over time I have let become a callous on my heart...dead skin so that I don't feel the pain. She has gone through some very difficult health issues and I make sure to keep up with how she is through my other aunt and Grandma. Praying for her if I know she isn't well. The past few months I truly belive that the Lord has put her on my heart. Like Jacob with the Lord, I wrestled with God about this...ALOT. "What would I say to her Lord?" "I wasn't completely at fault here God!" "How can I make things right?"
Yesterday was my 40th birthday. It was dark when the doorbell rang. My husband answered it and received a package from UPS. It was from my Aunt Cathy, for me. Inside was a book and some wonderful smelling lotions from Victoria Secret. I immediately called her to thank her. After so many years, I still know her phone number by heart. When my aunt answered we had a wonderful conversation. I loved hearing her voice and that thick protective skin on my heart became so very soft. I have missed her so much.
With my mom gone, having my aunt remember me on my birthday was more of a blessing than I can convey with words. We ended our conversation with telling each other 'Love you'.
This was my best birthday gift this year.
I only wish I had given her this gift on her birthday.