Today we welcome a guest post from Joanie Aidoo. Joanie is a wife, sister and aunt to many, godmother and soon to be a mom. Currently she and her husband are living in Seoul, South Korea enjoying learning a new culture.
When I was asked to become a godmother for the first time to my nephew, I was ecstatic. I felt so honored to have been picked from all my sister’s friends and other family member to be such an important person in his life. The first time I was asked to be a godmother, I was in my twenties, single, working and living in the city – utterly focused on myself. I was not huge into hanging out with my family too often, I had my own life to live after all. But once that strong spiritual connection to my nephew was established, I began to realize how important being a godmother really is.
Growing up, my own godparents always sent me a note and gift for my birthdays and Christmas every year so that I knew they were thinking of me, but I didn’t have much opportunity to get to close to them. It is unavoidable in some circumstances that godparents aren’t able to be as involved, but I had no excuse, I could be around for my nephew as often as I was willing to make the hour commute to the suburbs to visit. In his first three years, I was able to visit almost every weekend to play, become his rival in wrestling and lego building, bake a birthday cake, and occasionally babysit for a while.
In actuality, I was the one getting so much enjoyment from being able to spend time with him and be a kid again. At the time, my job was stressful and depressing due to mass layoffs and the constant looming thought that I might be next. My coworkers all felt the pressure, so the atmosphere at work was tense and heavy. I also lived with three other roommates so that we could each afford a city apartment, and they are all great women, but four independent young professionals in one household, especially sharing a kitchen, can be trying. My weekends with my godson and my family were my life saver.
The way my nephew would light up every time I walked into his grandma and papa’s house made my heart nearly explode with love. I knew the phase wouldn’t last forever, so I was grateful to be around and build that relationship with him while he was so young and carefree. He is a bit more of a tough guy as he is six now, but he still can’t hide a little glimmer of excitement when I am able to visit for holidays and spend time with him. His wrestling tactics have gotten a bit advanced for my abilities these days though, but being a kid again helped me to really grow up spiritually.
Now of course that is not all being a godmother is, a playmate. But the bond between my godson and me began with prayer, asking God to bless him and keep him close to His Sacred Heart, and also for peace in my heart during that time. The answer to my prayers ended up being joined, by responding to the call to be an involved godmother and aunt, I found peace again and so much joy! My desire to be an example and knowing that little souls were watching me as I acted and spoke, gave me the clarity to step back and realize what was truly important in this life.