My Nephew

Today is my first nephew’s birthday. What can one say about that moment your big sister crosses into a realm you can’t even imagine? It was over 50 years ago, but I remember staring at the photo she sent of this toothless, smiling baby.  I carried it with me for months, pulling it out to remind myself this miracle really happened. And miracle it was, because this nephew has a smile that still causes anyone who sees it to smile too, and he has produced two fine young ones with wonderful smiles as well. And miracle of miracles, I have another nephew too, one who lives closer and comes to see me with his lovely partner, and they fix whatever’s broken, including my lonely heart.

Not having kids of my own, these two, and their families, are my family. I must always remember my status as an aunt and not feel entitled in the way their parents are. Indeed, earning and keeping their love has been a main reason for my wanting to be a better person. I have often failed miserably, allowing petty feelings of neglect or resentment to get in the way. But those days are behind me; now I simply focus on the gift in my life these people have been. In 8 days, it will be my birthday, and I will hope they think of me with fondness on that day, as I do on theirs. But if not, big deal. My love flows out like a wide, wavy sash, surrounding them always, whether they know it or not.

 

 

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