I love to reflect on my life and be able to identify the people who influenced the person I am today.
I dedicate this post to Weird Aunt Barb, who when she came into my life at 17, taught me that it was completely ok to be quirky and offbeat (I was hardly a conventional teenage girl).
Last week, she lost her battle with cancer.
It’s difficult to define who Weird Aunt Barb is. Sure, you can say she was the wife of the brother of the mother of the family who hosted me as a student in Nebraska in 1997.
But she was so much more than that too. She was a great friend to me, and while we didn’t see each other often, when we did, our time was filled with laughs and deep conversation about books, movies and the challenges of working in communications and PR. We talked a lot about hair styles too. And shoes. And Australian politics. Rupert Murdoch sometimes was the topic. And Sesame Street. She was wonderful, and smart, and funny as hell. I would leave each encounter with Weird Aunt Barb feeling wittier and cleverer, and dedicated to reading more books.