Monday, February 23, 2009

A Reminder

Lying on the courtroom pew, staring at the little hole in the toe of the pantyhose of the lady sitting next to me, I didn’t even know I was drowning. I am oblivious to the order of business taking place. Mommies a stone on the stand, while daddy grins as the judge gives his verdict that would change this five-year-old forever. “Not responsible”, was the decision, Jim is found to be innocent of fathering me, despite the overwhelming evidence of his guilt. In the early eighties, blood tests were not admissible in court; so neither was the one that pointed to him as my father. The coward was free, free from me. Fourteen years later, I am still looking at that hole, thinking that if there was a God, justice would be served, but for me there was no God. Just rain. I was going to kill him someday, and die trying.
I grew up a little different than the other kids at school. I am the second son of a single mother, that didn’t have very good taste in men. I was born with hypoglycemia that made me sleep spontaneously at any given moment, and to compliment that, I was given a nervous twitch, a lazy eye, and a bad stuttering problem. Kids are cruel. So are adults. We moved to a different city every year or so because we didn’t have very much money, so I knew a lot of people, but not very many well. I had an overall pretty good childhood, because my mother ran a day care out of our house and I always had someone to play with there. My mother is a strong woman that cared deeply for my brother and me and tried to make up for the fact that neither Jason nor I had a dad to care for us. Jason’s dad is a coward too. I guess that is really the only thing Jason and I have in common, we are both bastards born from cowards. Jason’s dad claimed him as his child, but didn’t care to spend any time with him, I suppose Jason and I feel pretty much the same about that.
We didn’t have much family, an aunt and uncle and that was it. The rest of the family lived out of state and even if they did live here, half of them wouldn’t be caught dead spending any time with a couple of awkward kids. They were raised in a Christian home, with a lunatic minister father. This father was the same father that threatened to disown his daughter if she gave birth to me out of wedlock. She decided to have me anyway, a day that I’ve cursed for as long as I have been breathing.
Breathing, and doing so heavily. I’m laying on a set of railroad tracks somewhere in Michigan, sweating and crying, this was to be the last day I would suffer, the start of eternity. Ever wondered what your last couple minutes of life would be like? I have wondered this forever, now I know.
Once a teenager, all valuable relationships had been severed, especially with my mother. We have not stopped loving each other, but we don’t like each other either. This was when that decision, “Not responsible,” started to take it’s toll, started to cut away at my innocence, like a cancer that is incurable, I was dead already, I just didn’t know it. I was one of those kids that was just there, trying to fit in with kids I couldn’t relate to, I was different and I knew it. I think that the other kids around me knew it too, but just didn’t know how different. I wasn’t worried about the things they worried about, my worries were different, they were cold. And I had seen cold before, I knew him very well.
This is why my faith in Christ means to much to me. Without faith, there is no hope. Not just faith in something, but faith in something real. It gave me a reason to keep living knowing that at least 1 person was there loving me unconditionally. It gave me hope because while I was struggling with being abandoned, I became aware that I was never really alone. I was different because God was grooming me for something. I have to believe that. In 4th grade a little girl wrote a half page in my yearbook that there was something distinctly different about me and I should not stay in the shadows for long because I was a leader. A teacher in school whom gave me detention every day, that I thought hated me told me she saw something powerful in me and I would one day be a great leader. I didn't believe her either. I got a job at a school for the hearing impaired when I met Laura and the teacher's mother whom I had never meant sent me this letter that said I was to be a voice for God. All of these things seem foreign to me, and always have. I am as off put when I hear them now as I was when I first heard them. However that does not mean there is not truth there. In my life I have been able to have influence over many people and have been situations that people do not believe even when I tell them, so I have to believe there is truth in the encouraging words of these strangers. That God indeed is in control and continues to groom me for what He wants even when it doesn't seem clear. But I often need reminders of this when the lights go out and things get difficult to see.

PS. The first 4 paragraphs were edited from a letter I sent randomly to people in the phone book telling them they need Jesus too and that He could save them too. I like it because as ineffective as this method was, it reminds me of when I was so excited for God, I wanted to do the most foolish things.


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  1. i like you, adam.
    we could have been siblings.
    you remind me in a way.
    i am glad that God saved you and that you met Laura. she's a keeper.

  2. i think that you could easily be one of those dudes that goes around the country speaking at youth events. your story is incredible, and i still am in awe of God when i think about it.

  3. C thanks you for the lazy eye. Maybe one day he will outgrow it like you :)

    Oh, and I'm glad you didn't off yourself ;)

    I love how faces make every comment seem sweet 80)

  4. You write so beautifully.

    I always have felt we have a lot in common. Our childhoods sound so familiar.

    I think sending people that letter out of the phonebook is the coolest thing I have ever heard.

  5. Thanks everyone for the encouraging words.

  6. Brilliant. Your writing is unsurpassed. You were my best friend when you were staring at that hole......and you still are. You could have went a totally different route, but you didn't. You have God and a different character. You have always been a leader. I have thought that numerous times throughout my life. I lost a close friend this has been feeling awful. I'm not sure I could have made it losing my best as Laura says "I'm glad you didn't off yourself". I love you sir.

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  8. I feel the same Andy. Love you bro. Sorry you had to say goodbye to your friend. :(