- Related Words
- breakdown, decay, decomposition, disintegration, dissolution
- At a certain point, when I was still in high school, my mother took me aside one day. She told me she had something important she wanted to share with me. Something I could not speak of to anyone. Something that she wanted me to keep to myself and especially never tell my sister, or anyone ever. I sat down and waited. She told me that the woman my dad had had the affair with, that broke up their marriage, had ended up getting pregnant, and had a child by my father. Mom felt she needed to tell me so that if anyone else around town were to “spill the beans” about this girl to me, it wouldn’t come as a surprise. The girl’s name was Jamie. A form of the name James. My dad’s name.
- Memories started to come flooding back. A few years earlier, during some of our “visitation” nights…..I remembered my dad taking me to “some woman’s house”. I vaguely remember going in to this small, dumpy house and meeting a woman with dark hair, and her two daughters at the door. As we were invited in, my dad told me to go in to the girl’s room and play while he “talked” with this nice lady. I obeyed. For a half hour to an hour, I played with these girls, which was awkward since we didn’t know each other…..they were quiet girls and we didn’t talk much. Then awhile later, my dad would come get me and we would leave. I only have very murky memories of these times in my head. But after my mom told me about the woman, and the child…..it began to come together. This “woman” was that woman my dad was having the affair with. Her name was Jane. I remembered.
- One night, I recall being at a very large party. Drugs and liquor were flowing and everyone was wasted. I was probably 15 years old at the time. Most of the people there were older than me. I hung out with a very few friends my age, but always seemed to end up hanging out with older people. I think it was because I didn’t get to know too many high school aged kids because I skipped school so often. I felt most of the kids at school weren’t as “sophisticated” as I thought I was, so I left them in the dust. I knew how to party hardy with the big dogs. I was tough, and growing up way too fast.
- Anyway, we were all at this house, wall-to-wall people, sitting around, some standing, loud rock music playing…. all of us drinking, smoking pot, tripping, speeding, etc….. and through the door, in walks a woman with dark hair and some younger guy. I was just rolling a joint and happened to look up just as they were walking in. I did a double-take. I blinked my blurry eyes a couple times and looked again. By god, it was that “Jane” bitch, and some handsome, well built young stud. Upon closer inspection, she looked like an old, worn out hag. Her face was wrinkled and saggy. She had heavy make up on. She had dyed black hair. She was dressed in fashionable clothes, something a younger chick like me would wear. She and the young stud she was with were holding hands, looking around in anticipation of a night of partying. Suddenly our eyes locked. She looked at me and I looked at her. My eyes bored into hers. I could see a look of recognition on her face then. Her mouth turned into a small “o” as she realized who I was. I sneered at her in my inebriated state, took the joint in my hand, lit it and held it out to her. “Wanna hit?” I asked with venom in my voice. She backed away as her eyes got big, quickly turned around and dragged the guy back out the door. I sat there, and smiled. Well, well well. My dad’s whore bitch liked to party with the younger crowd. Liked to party with young, virile studs as well as older men like my dad. I filed this information in my head, and proceeded to get completely shit-faced.
- My promiscuity continued. I seemed to like guys best who I didn’t know very well. Once we started getting to know each other, I would move on. I didn’t want any emotional connection. One guy, I really liked. We were together for a few months, then he dropped me for a girl who was older. I was jail bait. He broke my heart. But I didn’t let it slow me down. I just kept going through the motions and partying, staying numb and running from the emotional anguish that chased me every day.
- My mom was beside herself. She had to keep working but was at a loss for how to reign me in. My dad was no help. He didn’t know what to do either, so he did nothing. I felt as if I had no anchor in my life, nothing to tether me down. It didn’t matter what I did, no one cared enough to take control. I was so completely lost.
- When I was 17, a group of vagabond hippies with a huge tent came to town, set up and started preaching the gospel. They were long-haired people that looked like me. The guys had long hair and beards. The girls dressed in long jean skirts and bandanas around their long hair. People that traveled around the country, trying to get people to “accept Jesus”. A group of my friends and I went to one of the meetings one night, on the recommendation of one of our other friends, who had gone the previous night and “gotten saved”. I thought, WTF? This is weird, I need to see this. So we went.
- I listened to the hippie preacher and I felt something open up inside of me. I heard his message about the love of God and my heart responded. I was so hungry, so desperate for love that when he finally asked if anyone wanted to repent and come to Jesus, I got up and practically ran down the aisle. Some of my friends followed as well.
- After that night, my whole life changed. I gave up cigarettes….just like that. Gave up drugs. Gave up partying. Gave up all my old friends. I started reading my bible. I prayed. All the time. I felt so close to God at that time, he was as real to me as a physical person. I truly had a miraculous, born again experience. I was finally at peace. I was full of light and love. I knew God was real.
- My mother was blown away. She told me I literally glowed. My entire life became all about being a christian. I walked, talked, and lived nothing but christianity. I began to drive my mom nuts. But she wasn’t complaining. Anything was better than what I had come out of. My dad stayed out of the picture except for our specified “visitation” times. He wanted nothing to do with this.
- Once the tent ministry moved on, I began going to casual meetings with other believers in an old barn that some rich guy bought and turned into a meeting place for us. We sang songs, hung out together, shared our stories and prayed together. I was happy.
- I had two years of the most amazing peace and joy I had ever experienced. I felt truly loved for the first time since I was a child. God became my “father”……one that actually cared enough for me to rescue me from my death spiral….one that I felt actually reached out and snatched me from the hellish life I was living. I was so thankful and grateful for my conversion. My peace flowed like a river.
- One day, a person told me, that if I was really a christian, I needed to attend church on a regular basis, “so I wouldn’t be led astray”. Even though I thought that I was fine on my own, reading the bible and praying every day, growing ever closer to God…..I was young and naive and thought surely they must know what they were talking about. Even though I didn’t really feel the need to attend church, maybe they knew something I didn’t know. So I went to church. And within two services at the church I went to, my peace vanished and was replaced by confusion, anxiety and fear. The preacher talked about how you can “lose” your salvation and that if you didn’t walk “right”, God would pretty much leave you in the dust. I was shocked, hurt, and devastated. This God that I had finally found, and who had finally found me……He would and could actually leave me? If I didn’t walk “right”? I knew I was doomed. I could never be good enough. I could never walk “right” enough. He was going to leave me. I was going to be abandoned. Again.
- To Be Continued………..