I am reminded just now of how precious the smallest gift can be. Sometimes a gift is so small that only the recipient recognizes it for what it is.
Something my Aunt Caroline said to my oldest sister Kelly, when she was young, was just such a gift. My sister has carried it with her all the years since, and in sharing it with me has gifted me with this treasure.
Kelly and Aunt Caroline were talking one day about how much they both liked ruffles, when Aunt Caroline said,
“ I’m really just a little girl in a wrinkly package.”
I’m sure there was a sweet, conspiratorial twinkle in her eye as she and my sister were initiated together, in that moment, into their own private club for little girls in ruffled dresses and marvelous shoes.
My sister, now an older little girl herself, still finds joy in that memory. But as importantly, there is truth in it. We are all still the children we once were. The packaging may get a bit rumpled, but the joys and pleasures that mark our personalities do not wither within.
Aunt Caroline knew this with every fiber. It showed in her enthusiasm when she made our family reunions extra special by adding decorations, color, photos, and flowers, which are are actually ruffles in vases, if you think about it.
And in this one statement she wrote that truth upon my sister’s heart. And my sister, in turn, wrote it upon mine.
And I will carry it with me all the years hence.