March 29th, 2013 marks the 2nd anniversary of the loss of the matriarch of our clan. Mary T. McSharry, or as she was more commonly known Aunt Sis, was the single most important woman to grace my life. In her youth she was the chief accountant for the Registry of Motor Vehicles and a former member of the Catholic Daughters of America, but it was the role she played in our family that she cherished the most. Throughout her 81 years she acted as aunt, friend, ally, care-giver, and many times mother to her 18 nieces and nephews. She was quick with a hug and ever present with a smile or a grin. She had more love and compassion in her pinkie than Mother Theresa and all the Popes that lived in Rome. She truly could take a nothing day and suddenly make it all seem worth while.

I can recall the many lessons she taught me throughout the years, most notably while driving. I can hear her voice now, “that rolling stop wouldn’t cut it with a DMV cop!” Another day after being cut off by a driver who proceeded to flip her off and berate her in the process, her response was to say that we should both say a prayer that he doesn’t get into an accident given his state of mind (Personally, I had other ideas for the guy). Looking back, I see now that while she was teaching me the rules of the road she was also imparting valuable life lessons.

1. Slow down and enjoy the ride.
2. Do your best to hold compassion and love in your heart for all God’s children.
3. All you are left with when you hold a grudge is a heart full of anger.

I have great faith (yes Sis, your prayers were answered, I found mine) that when the road rises up to meet me for the final time your eyes will be the first to greet me. May you also be the DMV inspector signing off on my license for Heaven!