Saturday, April 11, 2009

That Blessed Title "Aunt"

On April 8, I became an aunt for the first time when Pete, the son of my brother Adam and his fiancee Colleen, was born.

Being an aunt is a feeling like none I've ever before encountered. I knew on the surface, of course, that both Adam and Mary had a very special relationship with Addie from the very beginning, and both Mary (and, of course, Jon, who once passed out in a closet while playing hide and seek with Addie) and Adam (and, of course, Colleen, who truly gets little girls) have been amazing positive influences with Belle as well.

My mother once told me that being a grandmother is the perfect reward for raising children. Basically, you get to do all the good stuff, always offer kids a fun alternative to their parents ... and then give them back at the end of the day. It's kind of a win/win situation, as she described it, and I think I'm starting to realize that Mary, Adam, Jon, and Colleen have probably felt something like that with my girls as well (well, I hope they have ... I know both Belle and Addie think their collective aunts and uncles pretty much hung the moon).

There has been some bad blood in the past few months between Adam and Colleen and me and Pythagorus. The long story has more stupid immature drama than anything that comes up with my ninth graders, so I'll just say that it's based out of a misunderstanding and lack of communication, that we are as guilty of perpetuating it as they are, that hurt feelings were never intended on either side, and that it's hard for some people (and I put myself firmly in this category) to let go when they are upset.

I think that's why, to me, Pete is even more of a miracle. We went to visit them at the hospital yesterday, and the beautiful and amazing Pete was almost like an ice breaker to the awkward silence that has characterized my relationship with my brother lately. There were tears in my eyes the whole time we were there, in large part because I was just so overwhelmed with love for Pete, but also because I was just so overwhelmed with love for Adam and Colleen, too. Adam has had a really rough several years, and I have never in my life seen him as happy as when he was holding his son. And Colleen? She was a trooper, getting stuff herself instead of asking someone else to do so (she had a c-section) ... and she also had tears in her eyes when she looked at Adam holding Pete. I loved her anyway, but that made her truly my sister-in-law, if that makes any sense.

Anyway, I'm an aunt now, and I cannot wait to spoil Pete rotten and take him to fun places and hopefully be as wonderful to my nephew as my Mary, Adam, Jon, and Colleen have always been to Belle and Addie.

Speaking of Addie, here's a pic of her holding her new cousin (and I'm putting it here only because you can't really see her face ... otherwise, she'd probably kill me):


And here's me and Belle with the precious Pete:


Whoever makes the calls in this crazy world, thank you for this amazing treasure. And while I'm at it, thank you for Adam and Mary (who will be making me an aunt again in just a matter of weeks--quite a spring for my family :-) ) as well. I would never have survived my childhood without either of them.