Thursday, April 30, 2009

Letting Go

True love doesn't have a happy ending, because true love never ends.
Letting go is one way of saying I love you.
Author Unknown

colored balloons in the sky Pictures, Images and Photos

Last weekend, my niece and her husband unexpectedly decided to move. I am feeling sad tonight because, for the past month, my niece and baby would come over for dinner on Thursday nights. She would let me hold, feed, and cuddle with him, things that I always yearned to do with my own children. It was filling a hole in my heart that was never filled for I have no children. I would thank her, thank her for letting him be a part of my life. Her mother had let me "mother" her when she was a baby. At the end of the visit, she would tell me "Okay, Aunt Janet, it's time to give her back now."

Now, my niece and her baby moved far away - too far for a day trip. I will miss them both terribly. I know I can talk to her on the phone, but he can't talk yet. I know I can see pictures of him crawling, but I can't get on the floor and encourage him. I won't be able to rock him to sleep, or hear him say his first words. I will miss this.

My sister and her sisters are grieving, each dealing with it in their own way. Some through anger, some through tears. I, myself, cried unending tears as I watched her drive away. She, being young, doesn't realize the emptiness her absence will cause. Just to see her smiling face, or watch her glow when the baby smiles and coos. I will miss not having him underfoot, watching him explore in my garden, growing at an amazing pace, and teaching him about life, as I did with her.

Before she drove off, each family member released a balloon, with the words that we did not want her to go, and we would miss her deeply. We were putting her in God's care, and she was holding on to the string of the balloon as it carried her away into the unknown.

To my niece - I miss you already, and you have only been gone a week. Each of us reacts to this loss in our own way, but each of us feels the pain. You are a very special part of our lives, and to have you so far away, not being able to just drop by and give you or the baby a hug, is hard. Do not be angry with us for how we handle this situation, for we will miss you terribly. As your life changes, so does ours, and grief stirs our emotions, as excitement stirs yours. Let understanding and compassion become part of who you are. If you feel any of the following, let go of defensiveness and anger, and instead accept and hold dear our grief, for it is with love that we let you go. Remember - we are always here. We love you!


This is one of my niece's favorite meals. I would invite her over whenever I made it, or send a bowl or two home with her. Here is the recipe so you can enjoy it and think of me.

Aunt Janet's French Onion Soup

8-10 large onions, sliced thinly into circles
1/4 cup butter
1 tsp. sugar
1 Tbs. flour
6 cups of beef broth - I use 3 cans of beef broth and 1 cup of beef bouillon broth
1 tsp thyme, if desired
French bread, sliced
Grated cheese - I usually blend Swiss and mozzarella, or use Gruyere cheese

Melt butter over medium heat. Add the onions. Sprinkle with the sugar, and cook, stirring as needed so the onions don't stick. Cook until they begin to caramelize (become a golden brown - usually about one hour. While onions are cooking, toast the bread under a broiler until golden brown.

Sprinkle the flour over the onions, and stir to coat. Add the broth and thyme, and bring to simmer. Cook for about 30 minutes.

Ladle the hot soup in ovenproof bowls, top with bread, and sprinkle with cheese. Place under the broiler until the cheese is melted. Serve immediately.

Aunt Janet's Famous Sayings

My dad passed away years ago, and the majority of my nieces and nephews never met him. I feel that I need to share who he was with them so they could have a glimpse at this wonderful man. So, his sayings have become mine. As Grandpa used to always say "Friends will come and go, but family is forever."

Until we meet again,
Aunt Janet

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