For 21 years, I’ve been an auntie, and lately, I’ve been noticing the similarities between my nephews and I. Not because we have the same physical features, but because of how much they get on my nerves. They say people closest to you get under your skin the most, but honey, no one knows how to get under my skin like the adorably annoying men in my life.
Everyone is your mirror.
Everything that irritates us about others can lead us to an understanding of ourselves.
Too often we hold others to a standard that we impose on ourselves.
When my cousin Alaina posted this status on Facebook, I immediately thought about what I’ve learned from being an auntie.
Through all the fights, juice spills and Paw Patrol episodes, there are things I’ve learned about myself, and life in general, with help from my boys.
What I’ve Learned from Being an Auntie
Self-care is very important. Sometimes after I emerge from the darkness (also known as my room), the younger nephews hilariously say, “Well, well, well…what do we have here?” Business related tasks and the 24-hour news cycle can drain my brain and soul, so silence is golden to me. Like, gold Olympic medal golden. Although my mental health sessions can last for weeks, it’s not fair to deprive the little nuggets of my love and attention. It’s important to take care of myself, so I can be in good shape to take care of them.
Drama has no gender. I’ve heard people (mostly women) say they don’t want to have daughters because “girls are too dramatic”. I’m here to tell you: men, boys, males, whatever you may call them, are also dramatic. I comfort my boys when they cry, because news flash men are allowed to cry too, but they have SO MANY emotions and issues.
- The teenager spends more time on his hair than I do
- One toddler doesn’t like to get his shoes or clothes dirty
- The other toddler is a real life Sour Patch Kid
- And the pre-teen is ALWAYS adding his 2 cents in conversations, which usually never involve him
History actually repeats itself. My sisters and I live for embarrassing the boys in front of their friends, especially with our dance moves. My family got a kick out of doing the same thing when I was younger. Another thing I went through as a kid, is hating when folks said, “You’re growing up so fast. I remember when you were born!”, Watching my nephews has confirmed that kids really do grow up so fast, and I clearly the remember the days they were born. *wipes tears*
I’m selfish. The joy of Auntie Life is that I can return them when I’ve reached my limit. Being a parent is a job that NEVER ends, and I’m usually at a job for 2 months before I begin to explore other options. Everyday my nephews reiterate how much I’m obsessed with being the only person I’m 100% responsible for–OBSESSED I TELL YOU!
Forgiveness is hard for me. I can hurt my nephews’ feelings at 1:30pm, and by 1:35pm they’re telling me how much they love me again–even without bribing them with candy! Kids don’t hold grudges, at least not ones that last longer than 24 hours. Nope. Not I. Bare with me, I’m a work in progress.
As carefree as I can sometimes be, I still play it safe. Not only do my nephews have no-filters, they’re also stunt doubles. Being on a playground with them is the equivalent of watching Wrestle Mania. (Is Wrestle Mania still a thing?) They think they’re invincible + they rarely take “no” for an answer = carefree. That ain’t me. I’m not about that life. Sometimes I can over-think, over-analyze and over-complicate a situation in a matter of seconds.
What personal or life lessons have the kids in your life taught you?