There is a woman, known to me, as " Aunt Lillie"...........she was reared by the very people who in time would rear me.
Each of us were simple farm girls. We were led by self educated, but wise peoples. Frugality was a fact of life, not a bandwagon to be jumped upon because it fit the cause of the day.
Aunt Lillie, seemed to me, as a girl, to be elegant, to be feared ( respected), someone to roll the red carpet for...........her visits to the family were an occasion.
My Grandmother, noticed, when, on rare occassion, that she did not visit on Sunday afternoon. My Grandmother's heart would be heavy, though, not angry.
There was once, as a child, that I heard my Aunt Lillie say, " Mama, I asked you not to do that".......my Grandmother's mood darkened............to this day, I have never asked of this conflict. I have no idea what my Grandmother did. I only know that she was troubled by the conflict. There is the expectation that my Aunt felt betrayed. I only know that I witnessed what was a private moment, and as a slip of a girl, I was not permitted to intrude.
My aunt, was a banker, starting as a cashier, fresh from high school, earning promotions, working her way upwards, until at her height of power, she became, the vice president of loans and investments....................she was always going to school or taking classes.
How large she appeared in my girlhood mind, small, timid, delicate, educated, demure, classy, educated, how well mannered....................I can not think of of a single time, that I ever told her what an influence she was.....how I emulated her.
Only now, that my own children are grown, and my Mother, her sister is facing serious health issues, have I truly gotten to know her.
Finally, after years of trying to live up to her expectations, meet her measure, be worthy in her eyes, have I discovered how much fun she can be!
Even in my fifties, I still trust her and would defer some judgements regarding my mother, to her.
She is worthy of great importance to my life, and the hard decisions.
She is not a woman who is given to sentiment and sappiness.........I do so hope, that I find the occassion to tell her, how very much, that she has influenced me, and how I have grown to appreciate her, and rely on her guidance.........please, God, give me the chance, before the chances run out.