Monday, October 20, 2008

In Celebration of My Niece Cynthia

I realized that most of the pictures of Cindy I had downloaded onto the computer
were zapped when it crashed a while back. This is one I stole from her blog. It's
one of my favorite pictures of her with Annika and Trevor.

Today is the birthday of my beautiful niece Cindy. Cindy is my sister’s middle child. Cindy is kindness incarnate. I started to say that she’s sweet – and she is – but not in a vapid or saccharine way. She’s witty and smart and creative and inherited her own mother’s gift for parenting. She has two brilliant and incredible children: Annika and Trevor. They are awesome… like their mother.

Cindy has been generous to me. When I first got sick, she offered me refuge in her home in Arizona. It didn’t work out so well in the end, but I did get the great thrill of experiencing my great niece’s first year of life and I have some happy memories of Starbucks mocha frappuchinos on our Friday morning grocery shopping outings, of sitting in the dark, listening to music and watching one of Arizona’s amazing lightning shows, of practicing my driving skills in an empty parking lot while Cindy was mega pregnant, of meeting her many wonderful friends, of stamping parties and reading Harry Potter. And I have a memory of Cindy knocking on my door on the morning of September 11th, saying, “Aunt Kathie, I think something terrible has happened.”

Cindy has been through some hard times in her life, starting with losing her mother 18 days before her 16th birthday and on to other difficulties in more recent days. She has a remarkable strength and a determination to find and expand on life’s positives. She is a keeper of records and photos, the one among my sister’s children most interested in holding our memories. She artisitic and funny and loving. She is a remarkable friend who has drawn an incredible number of truly wonderful people into her life.

For some reason – I think I was sick or in some one of my life dramas at the time – I didn’t write Cindy’s birth poem until her first birthday. I can be kind of compulsive about things sometimes and I think that probably because I didn’t have it written within days of her birth, I went into “I failed” mode and it took me a year to work through it and come through with her much deserved, if inadequate poem.


Cynthia Ellen, fair lady of one

How fast the time's gone since your life was begun

You're singing and talking with so much to say

Your smiles and your gentleness brighten a day

Your walking's unsteady -- but still, it's a start

And you truly have captured this old auntly heart

I wish now, as always, that your life will hold

Limitless happiness to make you quite bold

In living and loving and dreaming new dreams

Of the joys and the beauty with which the world teems

I wish I had power (instead of bad rhyme)

To give to you magic; but magic's not mine

It lies in your smile, in the love you can give

In seeking and dreaming as long as you live

I hope that time treats you with gentle concern

That you prosper and grow and continue to learn

That your life is quite full of good people and true

And that you remain always wonderful you.

- I Love You, Aunt Kathie

Cynthia, beloved niece, I admire your wisdom and your generosity of spirit, your imaginative and inspired parenting and your goodness. On this your (number of your choosing) birthday, I wish you love and peaceful contentment. I wish you inspiration and appreciation. I wish you abundance and the house, the work and creative expression, in sum, - the life of your dreams. May your sorrows from now on be only memories and your joys continue to multiply.

I Love You. Happy Birthday!


Cindy said...

You are a wonderful aunt! Thank you for my poem!

Anonymous said...

What a wonderful birthday present for your niece. Happy birthday to her!!!

Dr.John said...

What a wonderful tribute to your niece. You are a wonderful aunt indeed.

SnoopMurph said...

I love Cindy. I have followed her around the country because she is just such a good person and friend to be around. As my son says, "She's ingenious!"

And I love that she gets to PICK her birthday number-what an outstanding idea! This is a lovely tribute.

Carletta said...

Lovely tribute Raven!
The poem reminds me little Lily will soon be a year old - time flies.
If you don't mind me saying so, you can see the family resemblence in her face. :)

When it's time for my birthday I hope I remember that maybe I can pick my own number! That would be swell.

Billy said...

A beautiful poem that I hope will provide great memories for years!

storyteller said...

What a lovely tribute to Cynthia on her birthday. She seems very special and I hope her birthday was as lovely as your poem. Thanks also for the ‘acorn’ clip and the other informative links you’ve provided. I’m celebrating my 1st Blogoversary TODAY at Small Reflections and tomorrow at Sacred Ruminations. Hope you’ll drop by if time permits.
Hugs and blessings,