Only two short days ago, I posted “The Problem with Being a Childless Aunt.” This topic weighed heavy on my heart, and I know it’s important to be open and vulnerable in order to heal. But I just couldn’t stop thinking about the fact that this post reflected a fearful and worried attitude. I encourage others to look at the bright side, and I felt like I needed to do this myself…
Listen for the whispers…
As a Christian, I believe that God whispers to us, but the devil often yells and stomps. For me, he seems to yell and stomp the loudest when I am on to something good. So, I got quiet and made a conscious effort to push away the doubts and listen for the truth.
As I drove home from dropping Maddie off at school, I heard an interview on HIS Radio with Jasmine Murray. She talked about struggling with anxiety and how her song, “Fearless” came to be. (You can watch that interview here.) As I listened to her sing, I realized that I, too, want to be fearless!
While contemplating that, I thought about a visit I had with some old friends at Christmas. Two of them are actually childless, one of whom told us all about her adventures with her nephews. She then went on to joke, “Every kid should have a childless aunt who gives them everything they want!” We all laughed (me probably the loudest), and I smiled, “That’s true.”
The Power in Being a Childless Aunt
And that’s when it really dawned on me. Yes, there are struggles with being a childless aunt, but there is also power in it, as well. I’ve said before that my nieces and nephews are very special to me because I do not have biological kids of my own. But you know what? They aren’t just special to me. I am special to them, too.
Will you come…?
How do I know this? Well, while on the way home from my youngest niece’s Winter Band Concert, my oldest niece (who I worry is growing up and away from us) shyly said, “Tia, if I get a part in the school play, will you come see me in it?” And my heart melted. I had watched her youngest sister play in the band. I had watched her middle sister sing in the choir. And it was important to her that I watch her act in the play.
I’ll drop everything!
Of course, I told her that I would come see her! And I’ll be able to drop everything and fly back to Oklahoma because I do not have two-legged kids at home to worry about.
Special Days and More…
Special days wouldn’t have happened if we’d had kids of our own. The close relationship where we can talk about anything and everything (including “if you have kids…” conversations) wouldn’t have happened if we’d had kids. Flying back for dance recitals and plays wouldn’t have happened if we’d had kids.
Loving without distraction…
So, there is power in being a childless aunt. The power to love these kids with your entire heart and without distraction. The power to show them that there are other ways to live life and still be happy. The power to support and encourage and inspire. The power to be more than an aunt!
So, when the devil yells and stomps and tells me I’m not their mom, I’ll smile back at him. No, I’m not their mom. I’m their Tia. And there is POWER in being a childless aunt!
Read more about My Auntie Life…
Featured Photo: Friso Baaij on StockSnap.io
Gosh this gave me all the feels. I am a childless aunt, and I love those Littles so endlessly. It’s such a strange thing to take them home and miss them almost immediately. Last night was so bad I just sat in my spare room and mended some of their old stuffed animals (halfway to practice my sewing skills). I know each moment is a gift, and one day they will outgrow me for their teenage years, friends, jobs, and life I general. My heart is nowhere near ready for it either.
Sending you so many hugs, Sandi…
I know exactly how you feel. My nephews and nieces are by far the brightest and biggest loves of my life.
I am a childless aunt and I adore my nephews and niece. (With one on the way but they don’t know gender yet haha ) I know they adore me because I can see them jumping up and down whenever they see me. Like you I have biological nephew and some I have adopted as my own and step nephew and nieces who are grown. But the little ones love their auntie. It hurts I’ll never have certain things like on holidays but it brings me happiness when I see how excited they get when they see me. Thank you for bringing a positive to something I have been finding difficult to deal with
Jennifer, I am so grateful that this blog resonated with you and brought you a bit of comfort (if even only a little). I hope you had a beautiful holiday with your nieces and nephews. Sending you so many hugs!
LOVE the post, and the picture! At one time, I felt like that – I was able to have an awesome relationship with my…nephew – my friends son. He was and is my everything, even though now he is…o gosh – 21!! I think in today’s world were everyone is so distracted, it is nice for the kiddo’s to have extended family to step in. Remind them they are loved, not just by us, but my God as well.
Thank you so much for addressing this topic. I am childless, not child free. I love my nieces and nephews so much. Thank you, Thank You!
You are welcome! I’ve been so amazed at the positive response both aunt blogs have received this week. The support of this childless community is just overwhelming! 🙂