This post is part of the A to Z Challenge and I am looking forward to posting my way through the entire alphabet. 🙂
Yesterday I wrote about my middlest sister Denise, today is all about my sister Angela. It isn’t here birthday or anything, but I thought I would give her a shoutout too. (Don’t worry, I only have two sisters, the sisterly posts end here.)
So, you are probably thinking, ‘Angela doesn’t start with E! What the hell is Elly-ville?’
Elly-ville is Ange’s business – she creates multimedia artwork and she makes crocheted stuffed animals and sells them at craft fairs and the like.
I love to see little kids come to her table and check out the animals. The kids are all so joyful and it is like they connect with the animals on a whole different level – Ange puts joy and whimsy right into them, I swear.
And that’s maybe the first thing you need to know about Angela. Ange is super good at making people happy.
She picks up on the little things that bring a smile to your face. She notices when you grin and she keeps track of why and then she will help make that happen again. I think that she has some sort of connection to a type of happiness that the rest of us can’t even see and I think she channels that into her various creations. I’m sure that’s why kids find so joy in her stuffed animals – she has poured that happiness right into them.
Now in the spirit of my post about Denise I’m going to tell you about the ways that I wish I could be more like Angela
Ange is really good at going along with things – a joke, a plan, a way to goof around. I don’t mean that she’s a follower because that is definitely not the case. If you engage Angela in the MAGIC of what you’re doing she will make it bigger and she amplifies it in a way that that doesn’t diminish your efforts at all. It’s a skill she has always seemed to have but I think that her improv training honed it even further. She is an expert at ‘Yes, and’* – for her the world is a a collaboration, she will build on your ideas, you can build on hers, and everyone wins. Ange sees all the interlocking pieces and she strengthens the connections between them. I can do it sometimes, but Angela’s ability to call it forth at will is astounding.
Ange also rocks at being interested in what you are interested in and giving you the chance to share why you love it. For example, when my sons talk to her about video games, or wrestling or whatever they are passionate about in the moment, Ange gives them her full attention. It doesn’t matter if she is not actually all that interested in the video or playing with playdoh or whatever, she is interested in her relationship with the person and that is what matters most. She is interested in their excitement about the thing at hand and it shows in the attention that she gives them. It is a kind of love and kindness that you don’t often see. It makes the other person in the conversation feel valued and respected and Ange is just incredible about sharing it.
Another way that I would like to be more like Ange is in her capacity for emotions. Angela can go fully into her feelings like no one else I have ever met. I’m sure that is a pain in the ass for her sometimes, but there is true beauty in it from the outside. When she commits to a feeling, she goes all in with it. If she is proud of you, she is the proudest person EVER. If she loves you, then she loves you all the way. When she’s excited, she’s over the moon. It feels really great to get carried along with those feelings and to be around someone who is okay with surrendering to them. A lot of people fight their feelings all the time and if you ask me, that causes a hell of a lot of problems. We’re often taught that we need to ‘keep control’ or not be so emotional, but that cuts down on the good as well as the bad. I would like to be more like Angela and just have my heart open to the elements.
I can remember the night that Angela was born – me and Neece being rushed over to a neighbour’s house so Mom and Dad could go to the hospital. I remember Dad coming into the room where we were sleeping to tell us that we had a new baby sister.
I can remember making up stories for her and bouncing her on my stomach in time to the rhythm of the story while I talked.
I can remember the smell of Kool-aid in the house when she took to dyeing her hair wild colours when she was in junior high.
I remember watching her do improv and being so damn impressed that she could be RIGHT there on the stage, making stuff up in the moment and she did it without any sort of stress or strain.
And to this day, I am floored by how damn capable she is when she steps up to take charge of things. She can create order out of chaos – a room full of people, a pile of ideas, a tangle of wool – and she does it with flair and with a smirk. It knocks me right out.
So, there we go. Angela doesn’t start with E, but Ellyville does and so does engaging & emotion, so writing about Ange today makes perfect sense. Happy Wednesday, kid – I am proud of you. I love you.