July 22 is Auntie’s Day. It’s not an official holiday but one created by Melanie Notkin, the creator of the brand, Savvy Auntie. ( I wrote about her for Forbes nearly a year ago.)
It’s in it’s fourth year and you know I love being an aunt so I thought that today I’d talk (more) about being an aunt. It’s not going to be a long rambling conversation but there are a few things I learned in my so-far short tenure of aunthood with niecelet and nephew.
1. I was afraid I wouldn’t love my niece. I’d always been a bit meh about strangers’ children and I was leery of having that reaction to niecelet when she arrived. Thankfully that never happened.
2. I didn’t hold her for the first two months. I was terrified I’d hold her wrong and cause her to hurt her neck. Thanks to her, I can hold my nephew without fear. I get a lot of side-eye from him but he’s only two months old and just wants his mom. He does smile at me, yay!
3. I am that aunt. I buy books and art supplies for her. Auntie Sylvia used to buy books for us every Christmas. I would devour them on Christmas Day. She’s the one who introduced me to kids’ CanLit with Bruno and Boots and Farley Mowat’s The Dog That Wouldn’t Be and Lost in the Barrens.
4. Niecelet doesn’t know my first name. I am Auntie Sylvestre-Williams, just her parents are Mommy and Daddy Sylvestre-Williams and my parents are Grandma and Grandpa Sylvestre-Williams.
5. I learned this summer that a 15-minute trip takes three to four times as long with a pre-schooler.
6. Mention you have a niece and nephew and other uncles and aunts will immediately show you pictures and sharing stories.
7. I adore my niece and nephew but I will not change diapers. Sorry, no.
8. I can have epic conversations with a three-year-old then play fingers before she goes to bed. You have not discussed the importance of Canada Day until a three-year-old tells you it’s Canada Day while she shoves rocks in her pocket.
9. She is argumentative, questions everything and talks all the time. I’m pretty sure my brother and sister-in-law know this but I’m encouraging those traits.
10. Little kids are manipulative buggers. I found out after my brother pointed out that I had agreed to an ice cream and a cookie despite him telling his daughter she was only getting an ice cream. Oops.
I adore being an aunt and now I get to be one twice over.