ya know (continued)

I wrote my will when I was 10 years old. I was positive I was dying. I told no one of my fear. I simply wrote my will and put it in my nightstand drawer along with a letter to everyone important to me. I don’t remember who I wrote those letters to but I know I wrote several of them.

What triggered my will writing? One day while in my bedroom getting dressed I happened upon some lumps on my chest. I knew it was cancer. I just knew it. (When I was 14, I broke my left hip. I was in the emergency room having x-rays and was panicked and sobbing because I knew the x-rays would show the cancer and I didn’t want my mom to know) No one ever told me that when a young girls breasts begin developing it will feel like small lumps in your chest.

When I began my period for the first time, my mom was in the hospital having a hysterectomy. She almost died on the table from hemorrhaging. No one ever told me that when you start your period the first time, it’s possible to have a few days of extremely dark, tar like stuff come first. Every time I saw my underwear with that stuff on it, I was sure I was dying. It seemed appropriate that I would die with my mom. It never occurred to me that I wasn’t dying. I simply knew I was. I was such a bad girl there was no way I could ever be good enough to please Jehovah.

My parents continued to study with Jehovah’s Witnesses and preparing for their baptism. They had to study through some book (I can’t remember what it was called) with a group of elders (men in the congregation who were in charge). I didn’t know any of this until years later however, apparently my parents were told they were not ‘fit’ for baptism. Why? Because they were smokers. I guess that sometime in the early 70’s, it was decided (by the bigwigs in NY) that smoking was no longer allowed. Everyone who smoked (and I think there were alot) had 6 months or something like that to quit. My parents didn’t. Whether because they couldn’t kick the addiction or just didn’t want to, I have no idea. (I do remember playing Yahtzee one night at the dinner table and my dad throwing dice so hard we never did find two of them so I think he was trying to quit then.) Whatever happened, my parents were told no baptism. They ended up taking a month long motorcycle trip back east to visit my grandmother (dad’s mom) in Minnesota. Turns out, they went to the summer convention with her and got baptised anyway. I cannot imagine them doing that. But they did. I have the pictures.

During this time one of my cousins came home with them and lived with us while he completed his senior year of high school. My parents continued to smoke only it was hidden from everyone. Until one day Les saw them. And reported them to the elders in the congregation. My parents ended up being put on public reproof. (that’s a public announcement of conduct unbecoming a christian and a warning that the person in question isn’t a good associate for the congregation) My mom and dad NEVER attended another meeting. I was 9 and a half years old.

I remember one night getting ready for the meeting and being asked why I had a dress on. It was then I was told we weren’t going to meetings anymore. I’m not sure about this but I think I was probably scared and relieved all at the same time. Scared because if we didn’t go to meetings, what would Jehovah do to us? Relieved because come on, what little kid wouldn’t rather play outside than sit inside for hours on end? I don’t remember much else about that time until I was probably 11 or so. My brother and I spent a weekend with my aunt who was an active Witness. We went to the Sunday meeting with her. A big, huge brother came up to us and asked if he could study with us. I know we told him he’d have to ask our parents. He must have asked and they must have said ok because he began coming to our house one evening a week to study a little blue book with my 12 year old brother and me.

I don’t remember reading the bible much but we must have. I don’t remember wanting to study much. I really only have one memory of that time. It was of this man sitting on our couch and telling my brother and I that we really needed to be at our house when we said we’d be there since he drove down the hill to study with us. It was rude and displeasing to Jehovah to say you’d study and then not do it. We were little kids! If our parents wanted to leave the house and go out to dinner, who were we to say no? Whatever. He must have spoken with our parents too though. I have no idea but it wouldn’t surprise me. I don’t know if we missed many more studies or not but I do know that we began attending meetings with him and his family. My parents never went but it became necessary that we go.

It was actually kind of cool to go to the meetings by this time. It wasn’t very often that young children did that…went to meetings when their parents didn’t. My brother and I were made much of. I don’t remember too much about it but I’m sure it must have felt fabulous to be treated as special when for my whole life I’d known I was too ugly and too bad and too whatever else had been branded into my brain.

to be continued

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5 responses to this post.

  1. I just want you to know that you were not displeasing Jehovah. I am a Jehovah’s Witnesses and I went through the same thing when I was young. I’m 17 now and I still feel that way sometime but I know That Jehovah God isn’t displeased. I’m looking foreword to reading the rest of your blog so I can know if you decided to stay with Jehovah’s witnesses.

    My mother was a witnesses just about her whole life but left the truth around adulthood. After meeting my dad who was not a witness they decided to get married/ about 9months later I was born. When I was about 7 my mom started studying with an old friend who never left the witnesses and my mom started going to the meetings again.

    I remember my dad starting the video games on Sundays just so we wouldn’t go with her. But he never objected to her religion or her going the meetings. Finaly one morning I went into my parents room one sunday and asked if I could watch tv. and My dad said: “No, where going to the meeting.” my mom bout rolled out of bed.And he’s been going ever sence.

    They were baptize Jan.1 2000 together. At first they were turned down for baptism for there lack of field service. Which they picked up. Now when I said that they had a lack of feild service I mean a lack. Maybe one hour a month when they had plenty of time to get more. The reason I’m telling you this is that your oparents weren’t the only ones turned down for baptizem. But I hope that that hasn’t left a bad taste in your mouth about the witnesses and I hope that you are still going to the meetings.

    I hope to read the cont. part of this post soon.
    Justin White

    Reply

  2. As always your posts are so honest and revealing….thanks for sharing!

    Oh…and if you want to play, we’ve tagged you! Drop by our site and check it out!

    Reply

  3. How confusing you childhood was! Childhood is bad enough without the “other” stuff. Looking forward to part 3.

    Reply

  4. Posted by Boston Pobble on Saturday, May 12, 2007 at 6:32 pm

    You keep writing. We’ll keep reading. {{{Traci}}}

    Reply

  5. Just wanted you to know – I wrote a will when I was young too (but older than 10! I think I was about 14). I wonder how many young JWs do? I never thought about that before.

    Reply

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