|This photo is worth more than a hundred thousand words. |
It genuinely exudes my love for her.
Caroline (Caï) Perrault (née Marceau)
TAKEN in: MATTAWA ONTARIO 1983
There is no other way to share this, other than to say that my Auntie Cai was unequivocally one of the most amazing people I have ever met in my entire life, and today I had to say goodbye. She was 89.
Growing up, my aunt was a beloved mother of her four children whom she cherished.
And, as silly as this may be read, I have always thought of myself as her fifth. Then, this afternoon, I realized that those of us that thought our ourselves as her special extra 'plus one' were in the hundreds.
A well respected teacher for more than four decades, she guided yours truly, as well as all of her students like the great beacon she was.
Growing up, no matter what I had happening in my life, my aunt was always an anchor for me. Providing unconditional inspiration and endless encouragement, not to mention a calm wisdom to the somewhat harsh realities that surrounded me.
In my formative years, my summers on Lake Temiscaming were most memorable when my cousins (whom I truly deem siblings) were at the camp next door.
I remember the first grand-baby shower, I remember the first big job offer, and most importantly their guys embracing my now husband as one of their own from the time I brought him around. Most of all, I remember how being in their company, felt like I was home.
That said, just like many, we see most family members at weddings and funerals.
As we gathered after mass today to celebrate her life, I asked the quorum around me how she ended up being called Cai, where her first name was Caroline?
My cousin Tootsie answered immediately. "When she was my teacher, she told us that she always talked constantly about how she wanted to visit Cairo, the largest city in Egypt.” The nickname stuck.
As I share a picture of she and I, my eyes fill with tears. Damn, this pretty lady literally made a difference in my life!
Rest easy and sweet dreams my love. You definitely helped mould me into the person I am today. You will be loved and missed forever by all who had the pleasure to meet and know you.
Don’t forget to say hi to mom, dad, uncle Vic, and all the others in your company. Bring them up to speed about what we've been up to.
Please let them all know... We will always miss them too. xoxo