It’s Gratitude Week here at the Until Zen World Headquarters. Yepper, for the next solid 1/52nd of the year this is a cynical-smartass-free zone. Just seven solid days of smiling salute to the Original Unsplit Atom for bursting forth with the Big Bang of Bounty that is this life. Keep your hands on the bar as we zip through the roller coaster world of whatever pops into my head for a super-sized shout-out. Might be a person, place or thing, or D) none of the above.
And so we begin.
My niece, Emily Elizabeth Beer, freakin’ rocks. Brilliant (grad student in sociology), talented (piano playin’ perfectionista), nurturing (cooks for her friends), and adorable (biggest brown eyes you ever saw).
But, that’s just the resume. This is why she rocks my world:
She’s the only person with whom I have a truly adult relationship and whose diaper I changed. (I think maybe once. And then I probably did a sucky job and her mother had to come along and redo it.) When I look into her eyes, I see all the eyes of all the ages she has ever been.
We think alike. We don’t have to try to understand each other. We just do. I think perhaps my sister was a surrogate mother.
When I check my inbox and see an e-mail from her, I get excited. Every time. Without fail.
She agreed to a “blog-off” WHILE working on her thesis. And I think she did it just because I’m her aunt and she loves me and she didn’t want to turn me down. And I love that about her. (You’re off the hook, Em.)
When we see each other, usually just at Christmas, she smiles. I mean, she really smiles. Not an I’m-smiling-so-you-think-I’m-happy-to-see-you smile, but a YIPPEE-LOVE-YOU-Gotta-run-to-hug-you smile.
I wish we had more time together. I wish we lived in the same city where we saw each other all the time to the point where we took it for granted, not because we didn’t care, but because we just knew the other one was always around the corner.
Emily, you’re one of the people I love most in this world, and I am so . . . so grateful for you.