Growing up in a home with two alcoholic parents carries it's challenges. Oh, my mom loved us to be sure, but she suffered the ravages of her hidden alcoholism which often turned our home from a loving nurturing environment into a place of confrontation, dysfunction, fear, and pain. My mom carried her own horrors of rejection, black sheep complex, and the struggles of being a single mother in the sixties and seventies raising six children alone.
Dad after physically ruling his home as an often ancient angry drunken monarch of an much earlier century, left his wife, his children, and more importantly from the view of a ten year old, he left me only to reappear and disappear from time to time the rest of my life. My memories from childhood are still vivid, troubling, and shaping. The words that best sums up early childhood is "fear," "loneliness," and "wanting." Yes, a severe wanting of a father, sometimes any father that might pay the least bit of attention to a young lad needing reassurance and love.
As a missionary for over twenty years in Africa and now a pastor in the United States, my path quite often crosses with other adults who well into their thirties, forties, and fifties struggle with the negative effects and scares left from their earlier years. Their struggles aid them into lives of addictions, repeated abuses perpetrated upon others that they themselves experienced, and stunts just about every relationship they truly value.
Here's the good news! It doesn't have to be like that! I have discovered that my past has indeed been the journey to make me a better person than I might have otherwise have been. And, at this stage of my life I am willing to start sharing some of the things I have learned in not only dealing with my past, but becoming better because of my past. It is a journey I am willing to share with you. Whether it takes us far or not I do not know for I have never before attempted such a venture.
Perhaps, my willingness to share at this time is due in part to the passing of both my parents removing them from any pain that my words might cause. It is also surely in part due to our fine sons who exemplify everything fathers and husbands should be. And, certainly seeing our grandchildren growing up loved, guided, & happy plays a big part in my willingness to begin blogging about my life's journey.
I hope to offer some help to those who might find it here. Here one can remain anonymous. Maybe, the followings blogs will begin a new journey with those who wish to partake. So, let's see what happens. :-)
Don was born in North Minneapolis, Minnesota. Having served twenty-two years in South Africa as missionaries with his wife Kathy, and eight years pastoring in the United States, he shares unique perspectives about life, family, relationships, and ministry.