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Meant to Uplift in These Times  

10/10/2021 16:59
Posted By:  - SIOUX FALLS, SD  

Date Posted: 10/10/2021 16:59

Besides my parents, my Aunt, who was closer in age to a big sister, is my hero, who died over a decade ago after a long battle with breast cancer.  Growing up, she let me be in her room when her friends were over listening to music, doing their nails, talking about boys, etc.   She also always hugged me, affirmed me, and said she loved me.  Always.

When I became a young adult, I noticed she did that to everyone, never parting without giving warm words and a close hug.  Then, at a wedding, I overheard her husband say an hour before they were to leave,  “time to start saying goodbye.”

So, first chance I asked her why she did as she did.   Short version of her story recalled the loss of her best friend who died in an accident her first year of high school.  She then told me their last conversation was a fight where they said they hated each other.  The day of her friend’s funeral she  resolved, if/when she lost another, she would not have to ever again bear such regret but instead would be comforted to know their last words were of affection.  More importantly, if she died suddenly, she didn’t want anyone to live with a regret like she carried the rest of her life.

The day of her funeral, before the family processed into the church, the funeral director came to the room where we were waiting and said there was a change of plans.  Because there was more people outside the church, we would first process through the parking lot.

My aunt never worked outside the home so she had no work colleagues.   Her social circle was the parents of her kids and her extended family.   And, the last ten years of her life, she was often sick and weak so mostly stayed home.  Yet, maybe 1,000 people came to her funeral.

My Aunt was more than my hero.  

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