I have been wanting to write this for a long time. A tribute to someone who played a large part in my childhood and influenced me in many ways. She passed away nearly five and a half years ago now. Not a day goes by that I do not think about her.
She was my Auntie Terrye. The more I reflect on her relationship with me and others around me, the more I am awed by the amount of unconditional love she gave. She loved, cared, encouraged, influenced, reinforced, supported, helped, inspired, created, beautified, and conquered. I believe that she planted seeds in all of us around her. Seeds that have helped us to grow to be more courageous, more confident, more aware of our own worth, potential, and capabilities. I believe she had an ability to sense when someone needed a little encouragement or a little guidance or direction. She was an angel here on Earth - and now an angel up in heaven. She was 50 years young when she passed away, taken by a very swift and aggressive cancer.
I am thankful that in my childhood she saw potential and handed me a kaboodle kit stocked FULL of crafting supplies, including my very first glue gun. I am thankful that in my adolescence she always inquired as to how I was doing socially and romantically. In that awkward phase of life she helped me to feel like I was a "normal" teenage kid. I am thankful that she gave me a beading kit out of the blue, supplying me with something new for me to explore creatively. I am thankful that she helped to pull me out of my shell, when I meekly did not want to draw attention to myself, having me join the girls in doing hair highlights in her living room one afternoon. I am thankful that she gave me love, shared her love of the holidays, treated tradition so importantly, loved puzzles and a good competitive game, loved the peace and beauty of Camano Island, and sometimes shared a birthday party with me. I am also thankful that she helped to create such beautiful decor at my wedding.
She could look at any old thing - be it a thrift store find or dollar store item and envision how it could be beautified. I believe that this capability extended too to being able to see the beauty and strength in the people around her and knowing how to draw it out.
She had an amazing craft supply room. After her death when we helped to clean out her home, one item that I did take home was a simple navy blue rectangular table cloth that would fit our dining room table at the time. I was particularly touched when I found on one side a smear of hot glue. It made me smile!
Anyway, whenever I pull out a glue gun now, I think of her. Whenever I sit down to bead and work on earrings now, I think of her. I still have the same bead trays she gave me. Her belief in me has brought me to where I am. I am forever thankful. I wish she could see all that I have created (including my two little girls). I wish I could hear her thoughts, ideas, and advice for my creations. I can imagine what she would say and can still hear a trace of her voice and laugh. I can still see her sparkling eyes and genuine, bright smile. And, as a side, a part of me thinks that she'd be a top seller on Etsy by now too. :)
Thank you, dear Auntie Terrye. The world is truly not the same without you. I miss you immensely and am sorry I never voiced my gratitude to you prior to your death. I hope someday we will be reunited in warm embraces.