I have been told many times by different people, that I am too serious. I guess they ‘re right when I self-examine. As far back in my recollections even as a child, I grew up too fast and with it came the memories of realizing how unstable a childhood I had.
I remember having to be careful when the telephone rang, in case it was a bill collector and saying that my mother was not home but that she would call them back. Of course she couldn’t until she did have a cheque to send them. Chances were that it would be next month and late again. She would sometimes have to alternate payments for different debts. There were of course the times I wasn’t to answer the phone at all because bills were really outstanding and one more excuse was not good enough.
Of course there were the times when my Mom had to go to her second job, and there were the ‘don’t answer the door to anyone’, orders. And I did get those visitors at the doors for sure! Back then it was quite common…. I’m afraid I don’t know if it still is… but it was common for bailiffs and bill collectors to hound back-sliders to do it by phone and by coming to your house. I must admit it was scary to pretend nobody was home and to turn the T.V. down low, knowing full well that they knew someone was inside.
Don’t get me wrong; I was 10 to 12 years old and old enough to be left alone and the T.V. was my companion and friend and helped distract me from outside influences. It was during the time that my older brother by 2 years and I were the last two left with my mother. He was that much older so that he would go out some nights. She had to work two jobs in order to even attempt to make ends meet. She had no choice just as I didn’t.
There was also the time that we were evicted from one of our homes by a lady who proclaimed on more than one occasion to be a good Christian. I was coming home from lunch walking with a friend when she said…” Oh someone must be moving”. As I looked closely at where furniture and many other items were displayed on a front lawn, I suddenly became very alarmed as it was awfully close to where I lived. Fortunately for me, my friend had to go up another street and I walked the rest of the way by myself. Sure enough it was our house and everything was outside, even my budgie and my fish. A friend of my mothers happened by at the time, and made a call to my Mom at work. She hurried home and hurriedly made some calls and by nighttime we were in an apartment. I marvel now as to how she did it. That occurrence affected my perception somewhat of a so-called ‘Christian’ woman using that illegal..I believe…method of removing us from our home.
My personality kept the insecurities of those days with me I guess even until this day. My days of education were affected because I never seemed to fit in. When I talk to kids that speak of ‘normal’ family life and weekends with their grandparents and vacations at their cottage etc etc. I realized just how ‘abnormal’ my home life was. I couldn’t wait to leave school and get a job and change my life.
You must understand I never resented or blamed my mother. Her circumstances were such as she had to just keep doing what she could year after year to make ends meet. I know from my sisters that she had times of breakdowns. There was one year 3 of us went to live with an older brother. That was one of those times. I don’t remember ever being told why we were doing this…just that we had to. That year was very traumatic as well for me because even though it was our home for that year, it didn’t feel like it. My mom called every day as I recall and came to visit us, but it was very stressful for me. I don’t really know what my brother and sister felt as I don’t remember talking about it.
So, yes I am probably more ‘serious’ than most. These incidences in my life and others similar are embedded deeply within my soul and my very being.
I do of course laugh and joke as my life was more than these things. I grew up and got married and became more secure and trusting of people. And I certainly am not a morbid person. It’s only that I tend to think about the whys and wherefores of life. God is an important aspect of my life and has been for as long as I can recall. Although a closer relationship came as I was going through an episode of depression, and my search for a greater meaning of life and God developed greatly.
It is only by God’s grace that I am where I am now, and that is, at peace with Him and my family and life.
If I had a funny joke to tell right now, or one of many comical episodes that were in our lives, I would tell it as there were many. I’ll leave that to another time.