… no matter how wacky, dysfunctional, unconventional a family may be, there are treasures to be found. Some buried deeper than others, but they’re there. Objects, perhaps. Moments of unforgettable pee-in-your-pants laughter. Tough times that made you stronger. The simplicity of a familiar sound or smell.
I am thankful to have many treasures, some that transport me to the past, some that smack me in the face reminding me to be in the present and those that make me strive for a greater future.
One of my most valuable family treasures is Auntie & Uncle Steve. Auntie (Angelica Lorraine), my Mama’s only sibling, and her husband Uncle Steve have been married for 59 years. She is 82 and he is 92. They built a house together, literally, with their own hands from the bottom up. They volunteer together. They share a lovely faith in God together. They still hold hands. She’s nervous and hot-tempered. He’s calm and mild-mannered. She yells and he can’t hear very well. They live, they love, they laugh. Together, they are one of those rare treasures that encompasses the beauty of the past, present and future. They remind you of where you’ve come from, to be thankful for where you are and to strive for a better tomorrow.
One of the most beautiful bonds they share is the gift of song. Their voices are those of angels on earth. They’ve sung in choral groups together and religiously sing in the church choir every Sunday. They sang at my brother’s wedding, they sing at family gatherings, and no matter the occasion they always sing the same song just before they leave. It’s a tradition that is part of us because of them. The song is a version of “This Was A Real Nice Clambake” from the musical “Carousel”, only they sing “This Was A Real Nice Party”. But you can hear it for yourself! I had to share one of my most valuable family treasures, because it’s just too selfish not to share the wealth.