I came out of the womb a serious, anxious child. The world scared me from the first. I preferred my mother’s presence to that of anyone else, feeling warm and safe with her. But you can’t stay in the cocoon of a mother’s love. There is a world, and you are expected to live in that world.
Very early then, I began to collect laughs. I decided as a small child that a person was safe to be around based on frequency and style of laughter. If you didn’t pass my laugh test, I wasn’t spending any time with you. My Aunt Marion passed this laugh test with flying colors.
Funny, I don’t remember any specific conversations with her. I remember being in her basement where the family was living while their house was being built. I remember her decision to push my cousin’s twin beds together one time when I was spending the night, much to my delight. I remember warm, fresh from the oven peanut butter cookies tasting like heaven as we ate them in her sunny kitchen, but mostly I remember her laugh.
Aunt Marion -Thanksgiving 1951
It started at the back of her throat and came bubbling out her lips. It was really, more of a giggle then a laugh. It was delicate. It was feminine. It made you smile. It punctuated sentences, or sometimes marked the beginning of one. It was infectious and drew you in, especially if you were a serious, anxious little girl. It was unique and part of my earliest childhood recollections.
My aunt died this past Sunday, leaving the world a lesser place with only memories of her unique little giggle. She will be missed.
Until Next Time . . .