So it’s really no secret that I kind of completely adore my toddler nephew. Like, really, really, adore. As in Completely Besotted.
My Facebook page is evidence enough of that. Before he was born, I really didn’t expect to be That Aunty. The besotted one, clogging up FB news feeds with unashamed adoration of nephew cuteness. But hey. It’s kind of awesome. Being That Aunty.
He’s 3 years old now and talking up. A. Storm. I am, at this juncture, Aunty Gloya. Evolved from Gloya. Evolved from Glowie. Evolved from Goy. Evolved from Gor. Evolved from Deedee (a variation of ‘Aunty’).
And he’s singing so gorgeously, and in tune. Honest. Aunty’s classically trained musical ear knows ‘in tune’ when she hears it. Baby boy has got him some epic perfect pitch going on. So he should. His mother sings with a voice like silk!
And he’s busting some Ever More Impressive and Seriously Awesome moves on Aunty’s living-room-as-a-dancefloor whenever he hangs at mine. If there is one thing that everyone in our family can do, it is Groove. And Groove Well.
There is so much of this little person growing so beautifully into himself. So much of his personality, his nature, his character, his generosity, his kindness, his energy, his rambunctiousness, his cheekiness, his boldness, his thoughtfulness, his openness, his innocence, his gallantry (he is already looking out for the women in his life!) and his wisdom, is emerging.
And this little man knows without a doubt that he is So Very Loved. By his whole family. Every part of him – the good, the bad, and the trantum’esque – all of it, is loved unconditionally by his family. We’ve all made a conscious effort to make sure that he knows it without a doubt.
So he knows it. He completely knows it.
I see him growing, I hear the things he says and I observe the things he does, and I can see the wonderful effect of knowing you are So Very Loved.
He’s so freaking healthy. On the inside. In himself. And so unfettered, so pure, so unashamed of who he is. He doesn’t know any other way to be. And I’m like, wow.
Sometimes, he says something, or responds to something, and I look on in wonder, and think – so this is what it looks like, to grow up knowing you are So Very Loved.
So in just being who he is, he is teaching me. So much. And challenging me. And my bruised, fragile, deceived, blinded, closed-down parts. And opening them up again. With his childlike wonder and wisdom.
He’s become Aunty’s Little Wise One.
The other day, Aunty’s Little Wise One taught her something – no, showed her something – wonderful.
So I’m in the bathroom with my sweetie pie. He’s standing on his little step so that he can reach the tap to wash his hands. I am singing a song I made up for him, that I’ve been singing to him since he was a little baby. That song kind of pours out of me whenever I’m with him. I’m usually humming it under my breath when I’m with him, without even realising it.
I high-five him for washing his hands Like A Boss. Awww yeaaah. Rock ‘n’ Roll. Water splashes everywhere but that’s cool. It’s fun. We like fun. Fun is cool. He says so, and I agree. I get the hand towel for him so that he can dry his hands.
As we are drying his hands, I say how exciting it is that his Aunty (to be clear, my sister, not me) is getting married in a few days. We’ve all been talking about the wedding so he knows that there is ‘a wedding’ coming up and that it’s a really exciting and happy thing. He probably doesn’t really understand what ‘a wedding’ is, or what ‘getting married’ is, but he has probably figured out that it’s a pretty good thing. Like, an awesome thing.
So he says to me, I wanna get married!!
So cute. And so powerful. Saying what he wants at the ripe old age of 3.
I put the hand towel to the side and I hold his now-dry little hands in mine.
I look him in the eye and I say – my darling, you will get married, and you will marry a beautiful girl who loves God with all of her beautiful heart. And you will love God with all of your beautiful heart too, and you will love each other very much and have an amazing life together. And God will bless you both lots and lots and lots and lots.
It is at this point that Aunty’s Little Wise One teaches her.
His response to those words completely blew me away. I can’t really do justice to describing it, but I will try (!).
As I was speaking, this huge smile spread across his face. And it was like the warmth of those words seemed to envelop him all over, and he just settled contentedly into those words. And received them. And embraced them. Because they spoke of good things. And knowing he is So Very Loved, he knows that he deserves good things. He doesn’t know any differently.
To him, that was a perfectly natural response. To me, it was wondrous.
In those few seconds, Aunty’s Little Wise One showed her what it looks like to completely accept, receive and embrace beautiful words, genuine compliments and blessings.
I have no doubt that my darling nephew will indeed grow up to marry, and marry beautifully. Because it’s been spoken into and over his life. And he’s wholeheartedly accepted it, with the childlike wonder that is so precious to the One who made each of us with such purpose and care. And who loves us so far beyond any kind of Crazy Love that we could even begin to imagine.
No wonder childlike faith is held up as something to aspire to in matters of the heart and soul 🙂
Our words, they carry so much power. They can bring life or death – to a dream, to a destiny, to a fear, to a soul.
Our words can, quite literally, speak things into being, for better or for worse. Not in some random, hocus pocus, voodoo, name-it-and-claim-it kind of way. Ugh. No thanks.
But when we tap into truth, into our truth or the truth of someone else – and we speak that truth over them or over ourselves – and that truth is accepted and received…something is released. And heaven and earth is moved, so to speak, and history is changed. I’ve seen it time and time again, and I’ve only been around for 44 years 🙂
Life has a way of jading some of us, of making some of us a bit suspicious, a bit skeptical, of such things. We struggle to accept it when someone speaks good things and truth and hope and love and blessing over us. It’s like there’s a part of us that reacts to it, that wants to sabotage it. To not accept it.
Because maybe on some level – conscious or subconscious – we’ve believed the lie that we don’t deserve good things, that good things are meant for other people, not for us. And we often have a whole bunch of past experiences and empirical evidence to support that lie. We wearily point to the facts and resign ourselves to our fate, that this must just be our lot in life.
But no. It’s still a lie. It’s still a lie. Facts are not always the same as truth. We do deserve good things. We do.
It will likely take a few runs around the track for Aunty to get to the point where it’s the most natural thing in the world to completely accept, receive and embrace beautiful words, genuine compliments and blessings.
Aunty’s Little Wise One showed her the other day, by striking example, how this is done. He’s like my very own wee role model, he’s so wise in the ways of such things.
I am a very lucky Aunty, to be so very blessed with such an amazing little nephew 🙂