At the recent passing of my aunt, I am reminded of all the things I love and loved about her – how she enjoyed blueberry syrup, her love for coffee, the sound of her laughter. I also reflect on the things I’ve surely gathered from her – my backbone, my stature, my love for pepper on cantaloupe, and the way I hold my hand over my heart when something touches me.
I’m humbled in the blessing of our lives clipped together, these ‘things’ that we share (we carry, we keep). But, I am also grateful to know about them – to know what she loved as well as how she loved.
We should want for nothing more than to have someone truly know us – what we dream, what we grieve, what we love (when the night is dark and the ground so very cold).
I am reminded of an instance some years ago. My husband and I had a pretty deep discussion about my assertion that he might not know me as well as he thought. To prove my point I asked, ‘what’s my favorite color’.
Let me say here that I’m painfully aware that I am far more observant than most people. I listen for every hint of the story. If you mention some author to me over coffee in January, don’t be surprised when you receive a signed edition for Christmas. It’s what I do, and yet, I like to think myself forgiving of those who aren’t made the same.
But I also want to believe that those who love us most should be inclined to know us better than most.
Anyway, back to the story. This ‘conversation’ occurred during a time when my brother-in-law traveled quite a bit and as a result, my sister and her little ones stayed with us a few nights each week. It so happened that they arrived just as the above discussion was ending.
Cameron, her two year-old son, was beaming as he came through the door, declaring he had a present for me (sure payment for the fact that I always had one for him). His little hand was clutched tight in front of him as I knelt down, excited for sure, and asked what it might be. As he slowly uncurled his fingers, I could see that a red M&M had melted all over his hand. O wow, I said. Then he looked straight at me (through me) and said ‘I got it for you because it’s your favorite color.’ ❤️
Even now, I’m smiling just as I did in that moment………….
I pray that I never have cantaloupe and pepper without thinking of my aunt Lillian. And when I die, God help the poor soul who dares to bury me in blue…
might that you remember
the color of my eyes –
the way my fingers
warmed against your skin
how I take my coffee
and where my weakness lies
what I love –
for whom I’ll come
. . .