Posts Tagged ‘Aunt Joy’
This week’s blog is dedicated to my beloved Aunt Joy Patricia Calloway. As I write I am crying and deeply saddened by her recent passing on Sunday, September 12, 2010. Today, she was laid to rest on September 18, 2010 and her services were held at Fellowship Church in Martinsville, Virginia where my Uncle Bishop Phillip Calloway, Sr. presides. I tried to mentally prepare for the news of her passing for months as I heard that she was ill and I was unable to go and see her. I must admit that there is no amount of preparation that could have prepared me for the actual news. I am deeply saddened and I deeply feel the loss her physical presence. My siblings and I always knew that we not only had two (2) parents, we had three (3), and our third parent was Aunt Joy. Aunt Joy was there for my siblings and I. She was my Mom’s (her sister’s) best friend. She always sent gifts for birthdays and special occasions. She said, “I love you,” for no special reason. She was a jewel and I hope that she understood just how loved she was by her entire family. I remember how her face would light up when it was time for her to praise God. I admired her love of music and wanted desperately for her to teach me how to play the piano. I did not want the wonderful legacy of playing piano by ear to be lost. The second to the last time that I spoke to Aunt Joy, I really cried hard to her on the telephone and I told her that I would do whatever I could to help take care of her but I just needed to finish school. I hoped that she would hold on but I guess she could not. She cried too and seemed moved that I reacted to her in that way, but I could hear the pain and fear in her voice as she was having to deal with the issues of aging. I wanted more for her I wanted the best life possible for her. In fact, in my daily prayers I prayed that God would meet her every needs and give her peace and joy in place of pain and sorrow. I prayed that God would bless me financially so that I could bless her.
Aunt Joy was single by choice she never married or had any children of her own, but she believed that her nieces, nephews, and god-children all belonged to her. Aunt Joy was a quiet storm, she did not say too much but she was always thinking. She believed in having quality friendships and not just the quantity of acquaintances. She loved good company, good friends, and family. Aunt Joy was an awesome woman, aunt, sister, daughter, co-worker, piano player, and friend. She was a woman of good reputation. She was quiet and did not need much attention, but you could not ignore her spirit once she entered a room. She was comfortable in her own skin and never spent time being pretentious. She enjoyed the simple things in life like playing the weekly crossword puzzle. When I lived in Connecticut she asked me to take her crossword puzzle to the local newspaper (Connecticut Post?) in hopes that she would win the weekly prize. Aunt Joy was a peace-maker, she truly placed the needs of others above her own, despite the costs to herself.
With her whole heart she loved her family and hoped that we could all just “LOVE ONE ANOTHER AND GET ALONG”.
I cannot tell you how many times she said those words to me. I watched my Aunt Joy play the piano for all of the churches that she was a member of and at the church conventions. She played the piano without expecting any payment for her talent. She just enjoyed playing the piano, realizing that God had given her this terrific gift. Aunt Joy would turn her head to the right and break out singing “I Surrender All” in a soprano tone. I loved every moment of it even when I could not stop laughing at her tone. If she was having trouble with asthma when she started to sing she would look down in the audience and give me, my sisters, and cousins the cue to get up and come to the microphones to sing. It always amazed me that my entire family on both sides can sing beautifully. What a legacy!!!! . Lastly, my Aunt Joy was one of the most loving people that I had the pleasure of knowing.
To my family and all of us who remain, I believe that my Aunt Joy would want us to be forgiving and loving to one another. Simply put, we as a family need to get over old grudges and disagreements. We have to understand that we will disagree sometimes but we must always resolve. With that said, I would like to apologize to an older cousin. In regard to your comment on FB, I still believe that you should not have a made a comment like that in the open, but I am sorry if I hurt your feelings in any way. Aunt Joy would want us to get to know one another instead of judging each other on stories that we have heard. Aunt Joy always took the time to know people for her self. I believe that Aunt Joy would want us to live our best lives by personally developing ourselves in the areas where we need work. She would want us to support one another and show genuine concern for one another. To my family, I pray that we would work on being healthier mentally, physically, and financially. Let’s not wait for bad things (i.e. sickness, bankruptcy, depression, anxiety, anger, hatred, and unforgiveness) to happen to us before we decide to change unhealthy patterns. If we have a problem with our food choices and sugar consumption, like me, then let’s work on our personal issues. Why? Because, when we work on our personal issues, we are less judgmental and angry with the family and with the world. The truth is, when we are at peace with ourselves we are able to have a better relationship with God (whom I call Jesus Christ). Aunt Joy is at peace now and I believe that she would want those of us who remain to have peace on earth too.
In closing, in honor of Aunt Joy, I want to offer my condolences to the family (Calloway, Wall, and Llewellyn) and I hope that we are able to re-connect in ways that we never have before. I pray that we will be more forgiving as a family, more loving, healthier, more prosperous, and more connected. If I have offended anyone in my family in the past or present I am humbly seeking your forgiveness. Also, I want you all to know that I love you all enormously and I want a fresh start with all of you and I am offering the same fresh start to all of you.
As always, feel free to post a comment and enjoy your family and friends to the fullest as tomorrow is not promised.