Hey there! I'm Vivian. Sometimes I write about life and sometimes I write about teaching.


All my life I’ve known that I didn’t want to have children. I never felt a clock tick. I never looked at an expectant mother’s belly longingly. When I was in my 20’s my mom would say, “You’ll change your mind.” But when I hit 30 and I was still singing the same song, my mom snapped. “You’re so selfish!” Those words hurt, but they didn’t change my feelings about motherhood.

Fast forward over a decade. I started teaching at a new school and at 45, I was the second oldest person on the staff. One of the young teachers said to me, “I get aunt vibes from you. You’re like our own Aunt Viv.” Once the other teachers heard this, they too agreed to this description and before I knew it, that became my permanent moniker, Aunt Viv. Even the principal, who was also younger than me, called me Aunt Viv.

Just over 3 years ago, all three of my siblings ended up on the path to parenthood within months of each other and I became a real aunt! In Chinese, you call your aunts by their position in the family as well as which side of the family they’re on. My nephew JJ calls me GuGu Viv, while my niece Izzy and nephew Teddy call me Dayi, which translates to Big Aunt. When I explained this to someone recently, they said, “Yeah, you really have big aunt vibes.”

Maybe I was selfish to never have my own children. Or maybe I was just born to be an aunt.

  1. amyilene says:

    Big aunt vibes….I like it! My sister-in-law and I are both “auntie” to each other’s kids. When we are all together, the four combined children just call us both “auntie mama”! We have decided that when we open our own bed and breakfast, we’re calling it Auntie Mama’s House! 🙂

  2. Katie Diez says:

    I love the “Big Aunt Vibes”!! I was an aunt long before I was a mom and it was truly a life altering experience for me! Your niece and nephews (and co-workers) are lucky to have such a great Aunt!!!! Loved this slice!

  3. TalaTimes says:

    Aww, I loved being an aunt before becoming a mom! They are lucky to have you!

  4. arjeha says:

    I am not a father but an uncle to 5, 9 if you count spouses (and I do). Happy for the part I play.

  5. V says:

    I feel like I could’ve written this myself! I have never had the desire to be a mother, and at 43, I never will. I love being an aunt!

  6. I love “Big Aunt”! I don’t think you’re selfish at all! Thanks for sharing such a great post!

  7. Erica J says:

    I strongly related to this blog — sounds like we have a lot of great aunts out in the world. I even have my nieces call me “Aunt E” for the play on words — though usually in their toddler way it has changed to just EE. Thanks for being part of Team Aunt!

  8. Anita Ferreri says:

    I do believe, like you, that to be an Aunt is one of the greatest blessings on Earth. While I am also a mom, I view my Auntie role as one of my most important. Aunts provide another viewpoint and perspective on life while maintaining the connection with each soul.

  9. hardly an artist says:

    This made me smile as I have always felt the same. Haven’t heard the clock ticking- love that line. I am also an aunt and feel so lucky to be one! It is so cool to be called Aunt Viv; what a term of endearment. Thank you for sharing this piece, since it has already touched a lot of people. Still smiling.

  10. You are going to be remembered for being an aunt and a teacher, and there’s nothing selfish in those two roles. Loved the niece and nephew pics. Yours are adorable.

  11. Vickie says:

    I miss my cool aunt label! Aunts are special! Never forget that. Thank you for being so open and sharing. This piece made my heart melt.

  12. >“I get aunt vibes from you. You’re like our own Aunt Viv.”<

    Holy smokes, if you want to be called "Aunt" someone, Aunt Viv is probably the most awesome Aunt I could think of! Smart, sassy, and taking zero crap from anyone! That is just a badge of honor that you should wear with pride for as long as you work in that school!

    Big aunt vibes. A badge of honor for sure! 🙂

    Thank you for sharing this slice with us!

  13. I’ve never been good at being an aunt, but my daughters are, it’s great you give off those vibes and enjoy being an aunt! Life is probably less complicated??



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