Friday, March 20, 2009

My Auntie Liz

I know that everyone has their favorite relatives. One of mine is my Auntie Liz. The thing is, she's not really my aunt, but you know how we black folk are! She is my Aunt's daughter (my mother's niece & my cousin), but she's older, wiser & to be respected, so I call her "Auntie."

My Auntie is one the coolest people ever. I don't mean cool as in she knows all the latest and trendiest. I mean, she's real. Very, very real. If she has something on her mind, she will say it. She doesn't mince words, my Auntie Liz. This is not to say that she is rude, because she isn't. She is nice if you are nice. You piss her off & you may never piss again.

Here's the thing I love most about my Auntie Liz: you don't have to worry that she is smiling in your face and stabbing you in the back. If you ask her advice or opinion, you don't have to wonder if she is telling you the truth or just saying what she thinks you want to hear. Know why? Because she will always tell you exactly what she means.

The other thing I love about this woman: she will never beat you down when you are down. She might tell you what a dumbass you are, but only when she knows you can handle it! lol

Anyway, a while back, after I had made many, many bad judgement calls & gotten my life into such a mess, I had to sing the chorus of "Take me home, home to my fam-ily...." I called my Auntie, told her I was coming & I showed up at the bus station with my raggedy self at some crazy hour of the morning. I was not only raggedy in body, but my mind and soul were a wreck. My Auntie made sure someone was there at the station to get my sorry behind. When I got to the house, she made sure I was fed, cleaned up and bedded down. And then she just let me rest. No questions or discussions about the bad decisions I'd made for having left then gone back to a man who didn't treat me right. No head-shaking or finger-wagging. Nothing except open arms for a hug before telling me to lay my "little narrow behind" down and rest.

I was able to just stop and breathe for a while. Just think and cry, cry, cry and try to collect up the battered & scattered pieces of my heart. I weighed 107 pounds and had had the will to breathe deeply knocked out of my soul.

After I spent about a week just sleeping (seriously sleeping, only waking to sip broth and go the the bathroom for showers), I was able to stand up on my own without my legs shaking. I think I was really sick from having lost around 30 pounds in a short period of time and not having slept well  for over a month because of fear that "he" would go into a drunken rage...

When I did finally get out of bed and start moving around during the daylight hours, my Auntie Liz would sit with me while we drank coffee and talked about everything except my mess of a mess. Somehow she even managed to make me laugh. And I never felt like she was ignoring my heartache and despair. She was just giving me what I needed (when I didn't even know what that was).

So, yeah, my Auntie is one of my favorite people in the whole world. I never tell her that with words, but I do hope that I've shown her. God knows, she has shown her love for me.

I love you, Auntie Liz.

Peace
--Free

(I am reading this over again in 2011. I have been diagnosed with some strange illness. I have to wonder if I wasn't having symptoms back when all this happened. I've been told by a good friend now - who saw me around the time I was with my auntie - that I didn't seem to be myself at that time. This friend says that because I didn't seem to be able to think and express myself clearly, she thought I'd had a nervous breakdown. Now I have to just wonder: was it a breakdown or this certain illness I have?) December 2011, Anchorage.

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