Monday, October 26, 2009

Auntie Viv

Uncle Don, Auntie Viv, me, Joe.

Viv is Joe's sister, and my children's closest auntie.

Here, she is comforting my husband, her brother, after Joey's passing.
They are sitting in Joey's green chair in his little L.A. bungalow. That chair is so precious to me now.

Praying over us as we made memorial service arrangements. I am hidden inside that huddle, so protected by Vivian and my two girlfriends, you can only see the top of my head under Vivian's cheek.

Below, you see Auntie Viv in happier times. I think it's a NAWIC event. National Association of Women in Construction. That's her professional side. I know she organized this whole event, cuz that's what she does--organize things. Judging from the papers in her hand, she's about to take the microphone and get the party started.

She's also extremely thoughtful and deeply compassionate. She continues to comfort us, over and over again. 17 months later. She seems to be a bottomless well of comfort.

She came to be with us last Thanksgiving, and is coming again this year. Joey and his friends spent many of his L.A. Thanksgivings at her house, when we lived in Maui. He loved to hang out with Uncle Don and Auntie Viv. They're contemporary and cool, and bridge the age gap easily.

Here are the flowers she had sent to us the other day. She took great care that it would arrive on the 22nd, our sad day of every month.

I long ago lost track of the number of times she has sent flowers, notes, cards, emails, and text messages in the past year and a half.

Flowers that are the colors of Joey's auburn hair.

The enclosed message.
Emotionally present.

We love you, Viv.

Romans 12:10
Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves.

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Jaimers said...

Auntie Viv is an awesome woman...she has been a wonderful Auntie to me all my life. Loving, giving, funny,hard working, self less and a whole lot of fun to be with to name a few. Thank you for being so supportive to my parents during this horrible past year and a half. Looking forward to spending time with you and UD in a few weeks. Love you.

karen gerstenberger said...

Thank God for such relatives and friends in our lives. Thos who share our memories, our joys AND who don't shy away from the sorrows are precious indeed. I'm so grateful that you have Auntie Viv in your life, and that you have a visit from her to look forward to. God bless you.

JoAnne said...

She is amazing... we are all blessed to have her in our lives. Love you, AV!

Anonymous said...

You are all very kind and love you all so much.

I too am reminded of Joey when I see these flowers. - I love the color of them and the same flowers line the entrance to our house. They are so beautiful...just like Joey.

Love AV

Liza's Eyeview said...

Everyone needs an Auntie Viv. What a remarkable woman of God. I am blessed to know her through the Maui Johnsons (now Virginia Johnsons :)

Anonymous said...

So glad you have someone special to visit on favorite holiday. I try to be reminded of what we truly have to be thankful for and there is much.
I could not get over how simple and beautiful those flowers looked from here, they must be much more sitting on your table. I am so glad you have many that remember you. Love Sharon

Anonymous said...

She's so awesome. I love her. I hope she gets a big huge blessing from being such a blessing. If the world was full of folks like her it would weigh half as much. Thank you Auntie Viv.

I don't know where else to tell you this story--so I'll tell it here and maybe some of God's goodness can brighten your day a bit---

Karen you know that fundraiser I have going on? Well the Devil is in the details and I've nearly stayed up around the clock for 3 days fighting a code war between CSS getting the widget to display. If I didn't get it to--I was going lose some donations.

I'm telling you this story cause it's an Autntie Viv can of moment and she will like it---I had to surrender the whole thing in a fit of total collapse this afternoon. I knew it was in a moment of make or break for the kids. The campaign was either gonna be a big flop at the moment or it was getting ready to take off so I cried. I cried cause I was exhausted and hungry. I'd not eaten for hours working on it. I had experts from wordpress burning oil right along side me.

I really cried out of exhaustion and worry and knowing that God owned all the money and could give it to the cows on a thousand hilltops if he wanted to--and so just at that moment, I cried out to God in tears and words--- then suddenly---on my blog screen---in the middle of my coding nightmare---and the widget link not working---my whole post went blank. --

After all that work, after two days of staring at a computer screen full of little pixels and me working to fix the problem...I lost the whole post. None of my doing. It was right in the middle of prayer. I was shocked.

I turned off the computer. I waited a feew minutes and the set the computer to reboot. Ate a bowl of cereal. When the computer came back up and the last thing I tried popped in my blog---it worked. Praise God---he fought the battle.

Word went out on the internet and in two seconds---one of the most popular garden bloggers on the internet posted the widget and made a donation---

and I bet you tomorrow the donations will pick up. I witnessed God answering prayer.

I couldn't wait to tell you that.

Anonymous said...

I see a lot of typos in that response and so sorry for that but I've been up for too many hours. I had to come tell you my good news before I went to bed. I wanted to check on you too.