Life

My September 1st

I really don’t know where to begin. Yesterday, September 1, was surreal. I am still trying to process it all, but I really don’t want to. Last week I shared that my Aunt Beaulah had passed. Yesterday morning we learned of one of my mom’s younger stepbrothers passing. Then hours later, her aunt, my great aunt and late grandfather’s only sibling, passed. Marvin was in Georgia and Aunt Deloris was here in Mississippi. Neither were COVID related.

My Aunt Beaulah (dad’s sister) had been suffering for years. Over her adulthood she’d had multiple strokes and heart attacks. We always joked that she was like a cat with nine lives. However, this last time she did not bounce back. My dad had three sisters, two of which passed nearly forty years ago. So for years she had been his only baby sister. Up until last year, it was my dad, two uncles and Aunt Beaulah. Last summer my Uncle Sam passed. Now Aunt Beaulah is gone. There are only two of them left. My heart aches for my dad and Uncle Bob. Neither are in good health. I can only imagine what it must feel like to be the last ones standing. As I said, I am still trying to process it all.

My Aunt Deloris (mom’s aunt), who actually read my blogs, was my girl! Now she could tell a good story. The last time I visited her, I told her that I was going to record her stories about her childhood. I explained how I wanted to capture her voice as well as her story so that future generations would be able to hear her speak. My plan was to do it this weekend when I visited for my Aunt Beaulah’s burial. I guess you could say God already knew it would never happen the way I had planned. He knew I would not have time to do things “just right.” Last year, as we celebrated her 75th birthday, I recorded her reciting names from our family tree dating back to the late 1800s. Perhaps that was all I needed to record. I also took pictures of names and dates of births and deaths that were kept in a bible her mother handed down to her. She was all about family. She loved us and we loved her dearly. She will be missed.

Marvin, my mom’s little brother, one of my first playmates, will definitely be missed. Words cannot even describe how I am feeling about his death. He was only a few years older than me. No one knew this but Marvin was the first person I told about me contemplating my divorce. I needed to tell someone and that someone happened to be him. Although I did not ask him to keep it between us, he did. That was the kind of person he was – loyal, a true friend and confidant. I am forever grateful for the time we got to spend together. Earlier this summer, he was diagnosed with cancer, which had already progressed to stage 4. During my trip to Atlanta, we had planned to visit but opted for FaceTime instead. That was the last time I actually saw him. Our last text was almost two weeks ago. He will also be missed.

Y’all, I’m in a daze. I don’t want to feel. I don’t want to cry. I feel like I’m tiptoeing around my own feelings trying not to reminisce too much. I was so excited about this new month of September. Said I wanted to do something different. Little did I know this month was going to start off like this. I am still optimistic that this will be a wonderful month full of opportunities and adventures even if I have to intentionally make them happen.

Y’all be blessed.

Shaun

Rest well, Aunt Deloris.
Rest well, Marvin.
Life

Beaulah

Today has been a very weird day. I guess you can say it began yesterday. I could feel something was off. I was anxious. Things were too quiet. I texted my dad but he never responded. Instead of calling him, I said I would wait until this morning to call. Well, before I could call him, he called me. My aunt – his only living sister, his baby sister – had just passed. She would have been 65 in two weeks. Last year, in the midst of the pandemic, my stepmom decided to throw her a small, surprise birthday party. She said she just felt like celebrating Aunt Beaulah. Little did we know, that would be her last.

As my dad always says when someone passes, “It’s just one of those things.” I guess he’s right. No one is beyond death. We all have to die someday. I’m sad. Been in somewhat of a daze most of the day. I have been functioning as usual, but I’m not truly here. I logged off social media almost two weeks ago because I was tired of seeing sad stories and reading obituaries. Ha! The jokes on me. Whether I’m plugged in or not, sadness and death still exists. And, life goes on.

Rest easy, Aunt Beaulah. You will definitely be missed.

Life

Hello Sunday

Hello Sunday! Not going to write much today. I’m on a much needed family vacation with my mom and siblings. This is the first time all of us have been together since before the pandemic. Honestly, I did not realize how much I needed this. Family.

So today I’m sharing last year’s blog, Just Ask. Thought it was fitting since yesterday’s blog was God Knows. I guess you could say they’re complementary. Just think, God knows exactly what we need even before we know we need it. Which means He will grant us the desires of our hearts without us asking. As I explained in Just Ask, sometimes it can be a simple thought or request and Voila! it’s done. Whew! Getting emotional thinking about how much God loves me. Y’all, He really does love me. Smiling. Grateful.

Well, that’s all I have for today. Wishing you a wonderful Sunday! Here is Just Ask:

Just Ask

I’m so emotional right now! You’re probably thinking, when is she not. Lol! I am just going to drop this gem right here and I dare you to use it! …

Just Ask

Shaun

Life

Hello Sunday

No one knows what tomorrow holds, not even the next moment. Over the last few weeks, I have witnessed life changing moments (good and bad) happen in a blink of an eye. Y’all, one move, one decision, really can change everything. Some decisions were planned while others happened unexpectedly. I have learned that the key to maneuvering through changes is to completely rely on God.

Before I started writing this blog, I watched a video by motivational speaker Trent Shelton. Within the last month, Trent has lost his mother and grandmother. And just two days after his mom died, his baby girl was admitted to the hospital where she spent four days in ICU. In the video he spoke about faith, purpose, and the value of time. I’m so grateful I haven’t experienced any losses in the last few weeks, but I have learned a valuable lesson about faith, purpose and time– most importantly, time. If you would have asked me a few weeks ago which of the three was most important, I would’ve chosen faith then purpose. Today my answer is time, not as it relates to death but as it relates to life.

So, I just spent an entire week in my hometown. Something I haven’t done in at least 20 years. I went to celebrate my dad’s birthday and ended up staying longer than planned. As usual, God had a purpose. While there, I had a rude awakening about time. Because of the circumstances of my stay, I was forced to throw my schedule out window and go with the flow. I have always considered myself a flexible person, able to adjust to anything; but y’all, I’m not as flexible as I thought. It seemed like the more I tried to control things the more frustrated I became until I finally decided to let things be. Let time be. Honestly, I needed to spend time with family. I knew everyone was aging because… well… I’m also aging. However, I guess I never realized how much they were aging. My parents, aunts, and uncles now remind me of their grands and great grands. Seems like it was only yesterday that they were my age or younger. Now they’re in their 60s and 70s. All I can say is I’m so grateful God granted me the opportunity to spend time with everyone.

Now I’m back home. Y’all, I missed my babies. They leave me all the time, but this time was different, I left them. Being gone so long (yeah..I know it was only a week) made me appreciate the time I spend with them even more. Made me cherish the hugs a little more. My next move is to spend a little quality time with Shaun. I’m always promoting self-care but rarely do it. I have a few things scheduled for the first part of next week, but afterwards it’s all about me.

Here’s what I’ve learned. Time should be appreciated as well as respected. From the time God’s given us for self-care, to the time He’s given us with others, it must be cherished.

Enjoy your Sunday!

Shaun