I remember the day Kendra was born and they told me I had a niece. I was already the proud aunt of 5 adorable nephews, so when they told me that this baby was a girl, I didn't know what to think. A girl? What does a baby girl look like? Would she be as cute? What do we do with a girl? Do we just buy a bunch of pink stuff? These were the actual thoughts that went through my head. But when I met her, she was perfect, and I had no idea just how special this little girl would be to me.
Kendra and I became close pretty quick. I babysat her, changed her, fed her, rocked her to sleep and over the years, she became my little shadow. I was her "Aunty Laddie'" and she was my "Kenny Benny Boo".
It has been a joy to watch her grow up into a beautiful young woman. She has made me so proud time and again. But I was not prepared to watch her fall in love. Nope that scared this Aunty! No one could ever be good enough for this girl. I had known Cyler from a job I had when I was younger, supervising youth at as they took swimming lessons. He was a good enough kid, but what was he like now as a grown man, ready to date my niece? Luckily, I had friends who were teachers that filled me in on his character. It was all very pleasant, but I still had my doubts.
When my sister was married, I was at the reception when Kendra suddenly got very excited and told me I was going to meet Cyler that evening. He had been out of town for work, but surprised her by coming back early, so he could enjoy at least part of her Aunt Eva's wedding with her. I thought it was pretty special of him to make the effort to be with his girlfriend on such a special occaision. I also watched him interact with my family. He was genuinly interested in them and fit in really well. I was also impressed that at the end of the evening he stuck around and helped clean up without being asked to do so. I knew then that this was a guy worthy of my niece's hand. But I still wanted to mess with him a bit. While we were cleaning up Kendra introduced me to him. I remember the following conversation:
Me: "Do you do drugs?"
Nervous Cyler: "Um....no"
Me: "Are you a drunk?"
Nervous Cyler: "No"
Me: "Do you keep your hands to yourself?"
Embarresed Cyler: "Yes"
Me: "Ok....I approve!"
As my siblings and I have always said, "If they stick around after meeting our family....they are keepers!"
I am so happy for Kendra and Cyler as they celebrate their first anniversary as husband and wife today. I wish them many more years together filled with love, joy and happiness!