Aunt Teresa recently passed away …
Three things, among many, will always remind me of Aunt Teresa because they are unique to her, as it relates to my childhood: Tang, Dandelion Wine, and Homemade Root Beer.
Tang = Aunt Teresa was very health conscious, and Tang to a kid like me was not the same as Kool-Aid, meaning it was a “healthy” drink. Maybe Tang explains, in part, how she lived 97+ years?!!!
Dandelion Wine = Aunt Teresa had her way of doing things, including each Christmas gifting a little concoction/elixir to her Godson (me) in case the home remedy might be needed to ward off a cold!
Homemade Root Beer = Aunt Teresa knew how to enjoy the good things in life. A glass full of ice filled with her root beer on a hot summer day was one of those good things.
Of course, there was 4-H and Notre Dame, as well as her garden. We also cannot forget that she was a strong woman with a fierce independence, so much so that she drove well into her latter days of life, with one glass eye. She was reasonable and thoughtful, too, knowing when it was time to stop driving, as her concern was not for her life, but that of others on the road. She accepted a loss of her personal freedom so as to allow others to not potentially lose theirs.
Practical. Caring in her own way. Stern, too.
And, then there was Aunt Teresa’s way of seeing through the bullshit and calling it out, with that smile and soft laughter followed by her saying, “well, it’s true,” while looking you straight in the eyes.
Remember that, all of us, to see through the bullshit, as Aunt Teresa did, seeking a truer understanding of this life, as well as finding the small things, the simple things that bring us joy … (pause) … and then share them with others.
Paz y Amor,