Friday, October 14, 2011

For Aunt Esther

The piece of petrified wood sits on the shelf. A gift from an Aunt and Uncle who knew their niece loved nature. They knew because we looked for agates together. We shared a love Indian stones. The birds that flocked to our yards were important. The creatures that live around us were safe with us. A bond of blood. A bond of nature. Wonderful memories are mine. I get to keep them and cherish them, revisiting them time and time again. Aunt Esther, this is for you. The pictures tell it all.

 Daddy's young sister came long after her brothers. A true Christmas gift to a mother of three sons.

My children got to know their great aunt and great uncle. They got to know their grandfather's sister. They gained an important relationship in their lives.

They came to Oregon. We looked for agates along the Pacific coast. We laughed and were happy to have them with us.

Twice they came. Each visit was a treasure.

Their adventures were ours. They shared their rock finds and their pictures....and our world grew bigger. Each visit was a treasure.

A new generation is welcomed by a loving aunt and uncle. A child who has grown up knowing about Uncle Phil and Aunt Esther and who is sharing their love of nature as well.

We had sale at the farm. They stayed by their nieces and remembered. A loving uncle and aunt with us at a difficult time.

As precious as the stones she gave to me is the love I have for my aunt who left us this week. I always thought that she understood nature the same as my dad. There was a connection that started long before I was around. How my father loved his little sister.
On my visit to Ohio in July, I got to see my beloved aunt and uncle. They always were willing to drive to whatever location necessary to see their nieces. Our aunt loved her girls. I am blessed to have spent time with my family. Time over lunch, over old pictures, over a piece of pecan pie.

This saying 'good-bye' is difficult, but in my heart I know I will see her again....and I know that she and Dad are sharing laughter once more. My heart is with my Uncle Phil in his loss. My home will always be his.

For Aunt Esther Loxley Barnhart with love.


Barbara McDowell Whitt said...

Pamela, you have written a wonderful tribute for your Aunt Esther. I know you will miss her very much. Your memories are touching and the photos show us more about your shared lives in Ohio and Oregon.

Pamela Loxley Drake said...

Barbara, thank you for your note. The distance between Oregon and Ohio sometimes seems impossible....especially with each loss. Again, thank you.