Everything has a place in your life. Some are ahead of you, some are behind and there are those things that are besides you today making your life what it is daily. How do we determine what stays and what must go? Do we let what is no good fall on its own like a piece of fruit that has gone bad on a tree? Will that which has passed its time in our lives, let go and blow away like the dandelion seed? What if we just worry about nurturing that which thrives, grows and uplifts our being? What if we do not worry about what needs to be pruned, but water and speak life to what keeps us living? Cherish the great and do not worry about what does not give back to you! Live!
I am not sure about you, but the majority of my memories as a child are not pleasant. Even though the happy times do stand out, they are few. I guess our minds keep those happy times up front, while the harder times have been pushed to the back like pimento stuffed olives in the refrigerator that no one eats. The human psyche is pretty amazing. It guards us from so many memories that will just keep hurting us if they were always on our mind. Things I have seen, comments people have said about me or events I was actually a part of haunt me when I start to dig. I write and bring them to the forefront. It is my personal torture to build me up mentally, spiritually and emotionally. I learn and grow and hope to change these moments from torture to examples and lessons. No one should have to dwell on their past, but we all should never forget what made us the people we are today. Good or bad, something in our past has created that characteristic in you.
Visiting people we see their lives on their walls, and it will show you their family throughout the years. A new baby, birthday, fathers or mothers day, graduation and just moments captured in time with a click of a camera. Books filled with frozen moments that tell a story in their families history. The pictures allow people to bring memories to the surface and share stories. I have no markers of my life as a child that will conjure up feelings or moments of my past. I have an empty canvas that only gets filled in as I write and pull my life from the depths of my vault that we call a memory. I wish I had a few of those memory shakers that can help me remember my life as a child, and not just the dark moments that stand out so vividly for me. I can see a smile on my face as a child, but I can not tell you what was making me happy to remember that moment. Is it my mind working against me, or am I just forgetting those times because they were so few?
Dealing with pain has become a norm for me these days. I am not sure if I am healing those wounds, picking those scabs and throwing a bandage over them or allowing them to scar and become a reminder. I do not mind going through some of these events for a second time, but it does scare me to think that there may be thoughts stored up inside that have been buried deep for a reason. What if I trigger something I do not want to comfront, and what do I do now that I have made it known to myself. I am dealing with those days gone by as if they were babies. I am gentle, tender and loving when I approach these thoughts. I look at them piece by piece so I do not overwhelm myself, but will I ever be done with this journey within? Will my past ever meet up with my now to show me what is to come?
I have had the opportunity to be home with my kids during the day and take them to school and pick them up and help out in their classes and field trips since they were in kindergarten. Working the 3:30 to midnight shift allowed me that opportunity. I feel blessed to have been able to do that for them both, but when I was I school if my dad had to be called for something it was taking him out of work In turn meant he was not getting paid and this may be an issue. So at all coat I tried to avoid him having to be called or asked to come for a meeting at school. I actually had no family at me graduation because I was somewhat tricked into going. That is a story for another time. This brings me to a time in my freshman yeah, which was pretty crazy because I was kicked out of one high school and had to go to school in another district. I was used to going to school in a pro dominantly white are because at that time they were busing us from the downtown area to the white schools and vice versa. I bet some of them white parents were pissed about that. It wasn’t a choice we made we were told where we would be going. Half stayed half went, but I was fine with it and got used to it over my middle school years. By my freshman year it was the normal situation, but then I was made to go to another school in an area that was totally white and did not has a segregation situation going on. 2600 student with about 10 to 12 of us being of color. And in the end we were all friends. I had never dealt with racism I my life. It was late 80s early 90s and I was in California. We had it all and it was okay cause we got along. With my new friends in the land of snow it was fun being popular in our own way. The kids stared at us like we were diseased but the faculty talked to us like we were not good enough and a waste of time. I’m thinking about one specific time when I came in to school like normal on a Monday. I took several buses 2 cities away to get to school which means I’m getting up at 5:30 and leave by 6 to start at 7:30. Sitting in first period and the teacher is walking around lecturing about what he likes and dislikes about the youth today. Long hair, ear rings, jewelry and this hip hop music is disruptive and he would never allow it. As this is being spoken everyone in class is looking at me because what he should have said was anyone that looks and acts like him is a waste. I had long hair, my ears pierced with my gold chains and a yellow Sony Walkman blasting Eric B and Rakim. Oh well I knew this was the perception people had of me here but it was shocking to have him be so blatant about it and in class. As the class went on the teacher spoke about how the school had been vandalized over the weekend and they were trying to get to the bottom of what had happened. About 10 minutes later I hear my name announced over the loud speaker along with the other 9 of my ethnic friends. Sitting in the front office against the wall waiting to be taken into the principals office and I was not even sure what was going on. As we waited our parents started walking in the office and sitting next to us and all I kept thinking was please God I hope they could not get a hold of my dad. I hear the door opening and I turned to look and it was my dad and he was not the happiest of campers. He sat down asked what did I do and as I started to answer he said be quiet and we waited for the next 10 minutes in silence until we were called in. The principal invited us into his office where an officer sat and after sitting down himself began his interrogation. So what made you do it he asked. I was stunned and stayed quiet because I had no idea what he was talking about. You had to have known you would be caught? Again I stayed quiet and my dad spoke up asking what was going on. Over the weekend we had someone come onto campus graffiti on the walls and break windows. What makes you think my son had anything to do with this? Well before him and his friend joined our campus we had never seen anything like this so we came to them first. My dad got this anger over his face and said your telling me you called me from work because you think my kid did damage to your school because him and his friends aren’t from here? Are you really being this racist right in front if me? The principal tried to calm him down and the officer spoke up saying he wasn’t being accused just brought in for questioning. My dad turned to the cop saying where are the white kids? The officer looked at him bewildered and replied what? Why aren’t there any white kids out there? Are you charging my son with something? Their reply was no because there is no evidence who commutes this and my dad grabbed me and picked me up saying come on. The principal asked where he was taking me and he replied home because you guys have no idea what your doing. When we walked out my dad told the rest of the parents what was going on and they all got up with their kids and left. The next day returning to school we had gained a new reputation as rebels for going against the administration. As we left I looked at my dad and said thanks for believing in me and he said he knew I wouldn’t do something like this and was upset I had to deal with that. I knew my dad would always be there for me and after that I had a new love and respect for him. The funny thing was that was not the only time something like this happened at that school. I will have to share more another time. Even though I was afraid at how my dad would react about being called from work he was okay with it if it meant backing me up and showing they were wrong. We are the biggest backers of our children and have to let them see that. I love my kids and would be there for them at the drop of a hat.
Sticks and stones
May break my bones
But names will never hurt me…
This is one of the biggest loads of crap you can fill your child up with. Words can damage you far more then what any doctor can possibly fix. Some are short term, but then a few will carry on your whole life and torment you when you think about them. I know bringing up the bible can push some away but in proverbs 18:21 it says the tongue has the power of life and death. What we speak can affect others in a positive or negative way. As a parent this is sad to think about because looking back I know I was not perfect but some of the things I said still kill me inside. I grew up with my dad because my parents divorced at an early age and I decided to go with him. It was my dad, older brother and myself living where ever we could because I had an alcoholic father that found it hard to find a steady job. It was never an easy time growing up when I think about it but my dad always did what he could to keep us taken care of with shelter and food. Even when it was an actual shelter like our runs at Agnews hospital because we were homeless. I remember being dropped off in the mornings at my moms to get ready to go to school because we had to be out of the hospital first thing in the morning and had to be back by night time or we couldn’t get in. Well look at those times I can see how hard we had it and how much my dad really tried. Well back to the storyline sometime within my high school years we were living in another motel in a bad part of the downtown area but I was used to it. It was a single room for me and my dad because my brother had moved on a longtime ago and had begun his life and family. Well I would get ready and leave for most of the day to hang with friends and go to school. I was always trying to get out and stay away so I found girls to hang with and get close too. I was seeing this one girl and spent a lot of time with her but I was always embarrassed to bring her to see where I lived. I was getting ready one day and it was nothing special but my dad looked at me asking where I was going and I told him I was going to see a girl I was dating and he was a bit drunk and said yeah right you don’t have a girlfriend. It shot right through me like really my own father believes I can not get a girl? I again ignored his words and questions and he said well why haven’t I ever seen this so called girlfriend and I said yeah why would I want to bring her here it’s embarrassing. His face went blank, I had just touched a nerve that I had never seen before. He was hurt by my statement and then turned it into anger slamming stuff and yelling how I was embarrassed of my dad and what he was providing. I just left making it easier for both of us and by the time of my return he was already passed out never to bring it up again. Those words had done something inside of my dad because he did all he could to provide and I had shot him down and that was his manhood. I never apologized for those words and until this day it still hurts to think of the pain I caused him. A cut could have been healed but my words scarred him more then I ever knew. I love you dad, rest in peace.