The thing I love about our family is that we will welcome anyone into our family. Everyone is an Auntie to my children. We have “play cousins”, people that we aren’t related to that become our aunties. I was blessed that both of my parents came from large families. My father’s family is in Georgia. My mother’s family is in Maryland, Delaware and of course Michigan. I have many aunties, uncles, great aunties and so many cousins.
I could probably tell a story about all of my relatives because they all had a hand in raising me I believe. My love for family is because that is what I was surrounded by as a child. Family comes before everything else. But I have one auntie from Michigan who is my guardian angel on earth.
My Auntie Theresa isn’t on Facebook, so I am counting on my Michigan family to share this with her. I was going to read it to her but I wouldn’t be able to read it without crying.
I have always admired my Aunt ReRe, that is what we all called her. We all loved going to her house. All of our family dinners were there. It was the gathering place for happy occasions as well as sad. I loved spending time with her when I was younger. She would create the best jello molds, that always amazed me when she put it on the dessert table. Auntie ReRe was always helping others. No matter what time of day or night, if you called her she would be there.
When my family decided to move to Delaware, I stayed in Michigan to begin my teaching career. I was devastated that my family was leaving me. But I knew that I was in good hands with all of my relatives in Michigan. I moved closer to my Auntie ReRe and she was always there for me. When I lived in Michigan I spoke to my mommy once in the morning before work and in the evening. There were many days that we would talk on my lunch break too. Well the same went for my Auntie ReRe we spoke every morning and evening. It was our routine.
When I would take Harrison and Sydney to her house and watch their excitement at being at ReRe’s house. It reminded me of the joy that I felt as a child. My Auntie ReRe was my second mom. I could call her in the middle of the night crying and she would pray with me. If I called her in the morning and needed her help she would come over right away. My mommy was glad that I had a bond with my family because they would step in and help me and she knew I was never alone. I didn’t want mommy worrying about me, so I tried to hide the challenges that I was facing.
We made sure to visit Auntie ReRe every weekend just to check in on her. She embraced autism and was willing to watch Sydney and learn about how to help her. I think she can give a testimony to the success that Sydney has made since her diagnosis. There were many times that Auntie ReRe blessed me. I was at my breaking point and I had a chance to celebrate a high school friend’s 40th birthday in New York. Auntie ReRe stepped in and helped Rob with the kids so that I could get away for a long weekend. The timing of that trip was perfect, because it was before I filed for divorce. I needed that time to connect with my friends and exhale.
Auntie ReRe always loved Rob and he loved her too. If he could help her he did without hesitation. On the court date for my divorce guess who went with me? My Auntie ReRe talked and prayed with me on the ride to Pontiac. She kept encouraging me and made me laugh to keep from crying. After we signed the papers Rob and Auntie ReRe embraced. I thought to myself, she is one classy lady.
Auntie ReRe and I still talk everyday. Leaving Michigan was tough but leaving Auntie ReRe was difficult for the kids and I. Thank you God for surrounding me with strong, faithful women that all took a part in making me the woman I am today. Auntie ReRe we love you and miss you so much. I am so glad that you are texting now!
You can’t pick your family. God picked the best family for me.