In order to TRULY obey You, I need to write the story of my life — and I have REALLY been resisting doing just that. No, make that REBELLIOUSLY REFUSING to obey You for three (3) years.
Oh, PAPA . . . (my heart’s crying) . . . I am so sorry.
“You are forgiven, Lovee. You are forgiven. Always.”
Thank You, PAPA, thank You!!! (my heart’s rejoicing and is enCOURAGED!)
“Write on, Daughter, write on!!! :-)”
So . . . where do I start writing about my life? Well, as one of my favorite musical movie lines says, “At the beginning — it’s a very good place to start!”
I was probably conceived in the month of January of my birth year, but I was ORIGINALLY Conceived before time ever began. I was Conceived in PAPA GOD’S Good Heart and He Is THE One to Whom I owe everything! Thank You, PAPA!!!
“You are welcome, Lovee! Now, get onto telling the story! :-)”
Ahem . . . (clearing throat and getting back to writing!)
I’m the youngest of four (4) children and was raised all over the United States in a career military family. My biological father (Maynard, Sr.) was in the Navy and his last rank before retiring was as a CPO (Chief Petty Officer). “Grease Monkey” was one of the nicknames for helicopter mechanics and that was definitely one of his areas of expertise.
My biological mother (Ruth) was living in Jacksonville, Florida when she met Maynard, Sr. at a bar. She had already been married and divorced two times (along with one partner she didn’t marry), but no children from any of those three men. Ruth and Maynard, Sr. married in 1956 and soon thereafter started having children.
In 1957, my oldest brother, Maynard, Jr., was born in Patuxent River, Maryland — the same place where my sister, Michelle, was born one year after him. My youngest brother, Mark, was born the year following in Memphis,Tennessee. Two years later, I arrived in Jacksonville, FL — the city where my parents originally met.
Sometime after my birth, Maynard, Sr. went through a particularly personal surgery which made it so there wouldn’t be any more children. Of course, I only learned that piece of information many, many years after I was born.
My family moved around quite a lot, being a Navy family and all. As a matter of fact, I lived in ten different houses by the time I was ten years old. Yup.
After being born in Jax (Jacksonville), my family moved back to Patuxent River (Pax River) where my memories of snow are PHENOMENAL!!! Of course, that’s because I wasn’t driving in it, I was sledding down the hill with my three siblings!
Next state was California — Imperial Beach and Silver Stand, to be exact. I started kindergarten in Imperial Beach and transferred to Silver Strand in the middle of 1st grade. In 2nd grade I met my FAVORITIST teacher, Mrs. Starr. She loved the red-skinned peanuts and my mom bought numerous cans of them for me to give to her. Mrs. Starr was also my 3rd grade teacher and when I had to leave her and my classmates to move to Texas, my heart was torn to pieces. Imagine my SURPRISE when Valentine’s Day came (the February after moving in December) and I received a BIG envelope addressed to me!!! Inside were dozens of valentine cards from my Silver Strand classmates and, of course, my extra-special teacher, Mrs. Starr!
Before I continue with The Lone Star State of Texas, let me share one conversation I remember having with Mrs. Starr. I asked her, “Mrs. Starr, do you have a nice husband?” She enthusiastically replied, “I most certainly do!” With that answer, I immediately asked her the question that I had been desiring to ask her for a long time, “Mrs. Starr, may I come live with you and your husband?” I don’t remember how she answered my 2nd question (I’m sure she was caught quite off guard), but I’ve never forgotten nor repressed that conversation. I’ve thanked PAPA many times for Mrs. Starr and one of these days I hope to connect with her (if she’s still on this earth).
Back to the Yellow Rose of Texas . . .
Without a doubt, both California and Texas were my two favorite places growing up! I have MANY fond memories of friends and school in those two states. Ironically, they were also where some of the worst sexual, physical, emotional abuse and neglect occurred. I’m grateful for the extremely fond memories outside of the house — they helped me cope with the atrocities committed against me inside the house. Another reason I loved those two states was the weather! California had PHENOMENAL weather (true!) and a GREAT ocean with lots of BIG boulders, while Texas had some serious sand storms! Yup, you guessed it — I loved it! I didn’t have to drive in it (kinda like snow and ice), but it changed everything and I loved that! The tumbleweeds could get really big and they would roll around like nobody’s business! Yup! Purty cool!
It was in Texas where the story of “Charlotte’s Web” was first read to me and in that same Beeville school was where I first started participating in “Olympic” athletic events. (Both of my parents were excellent athletes and my entire family played fast-pitch softball together.) The sporting events were held annually for each school. The school winners in each event were sent to the “big stadium” to compete against other schools. Two years in a row I competed in the softball throw and both years came in first in my school and third at the big stadium for my age. Then we moved to Georgia in the middle of my 5th grade.
Before we moved, my neighbor across the street (Jimmy Patterson) gave me a kiss on my left cheek. I gave him one on his cheek, too. I was torn when I left Silver Strand, but I was DEVASTATED when I had to leave Beeville. So much so, that I made an “inner vow” to NEVER get close to another friend, again. It wouldn’t be until decades later (after entering recovery in 1995), when I began to learn how destructive inner vows are, the vital need to repent of those vows, and to ask JESUS to CHaSM (Cleanse, Heal, and Strengthen, Mature) me. In the mean time, though, this vow was just one more to add to the dozens of vows I had already made from being sexually abused.
Maynard, Sr. retired in Texas, so Georgia was the first state I lived with him being around all year long. Bainbridge, Georgia was where I first joined the band and tried-out for the girls’ basketball team in my 6th grade. We moved the middle of that year to Florida where I attended Sopchoppy Elementary School. There wasn’t a band or a girls’ basketball team at Sopchoppy. I was REALLY beside myself with these changes! PLUS — puberty had started developing on my body — WITHOUT my permission!!! I wanted to die and I HATED going to school with all of these changes!
One bright spot was my 6th grade teacher, Mrs. Hall, who was tall and very nice. The 5th grade teacher across the hall, Mrs. Margie Clay, was a nice lady, too, and the two classes sometimes did events together. I can still see how short Mrs. Clay was — especially when she stood next to Mrs. Hall! (I will share in another post how I know Mrs. Clay’s first name after all of these years.)
I was 10 years old when I entered the 6th grade and turned 11 a few months later. But while still in Georgia, I was given a BEAUTIFUL and SMART hound dog whom I named Brownie. She was the best dog that ever lived! Brownie made the trip to Florida, but she “disappeared” while we were living at what was called “the Posey house” in Medart. To this day I don’t know what happened to her or to my very first dog, Mollie (she was given to me in Beeville). It was years later (after my entering recovery) that Ruth allowed me to “interview” her over the phone. Mom answered every question I asked and she volunteered a lot of information, as well. One piece of info she shared was about Maynard, Sr. purposefully killing her dog, Teener (a miniature collie), while she (Mom) was in the hospital for one week in Pax River. I don’t know if that’s what happened to either of my dogs, but this much I do know: KING YESHUA knows and that’s all that matters.
Well, it’s getting time for me to get ready for some sleep. Next time, I’ll continue writing about 7th grade and beyond!
PAPA’S Blessings on each one of you, dear Readers!
In HIS Great Love!
Warrior Princess Melanee