July 2, 2018

I have been replaying the naming ceremony from this past weekend. Having been so overwhelmed by the names and the meaning of those names I am still processing the evening.

During the ceremony, Aunty mentioned that there was a cousin whom my Dad had raised as his daughter. Their brother (Auntie and my Dad’s brother) had passed away at a young age leaving three daughters. My Dad had stepped in to essentially raise one of the daughters. From the sounds of the stories, they were very close. Sadly, this same daughter lost her battle with cancer a couple of years ago devastating my Dad who felt the loss as if he were losing his own daughter. Aunty made the comment in the ceremony that the timing of my entry into the family filled a void for my Dad. My Dad reiterated this same message to me yesterday when I saw him after the ceremony.

I understand the intent of these words by both my Dad and my Aunt are meant to demonstrate timing is everything. But there is a part of me that feels sad. Was this cousin really replacing a void for me or am I filling a void in her absence? My Dad could have had a daughter and a niece in his life for 40 years.

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