February 25, 2016

A Child of the 60’s & 70’s

The encouragement and love I received from my last post was so overwhelming… I never expected it. The tears I shed were tears of joy, knowing I was just trying to do what The Lord wanted me to. It feels so good, to know He’s pleased with you and that you’ve been obedient. A friend of mine said, “How can you test your faith, if you never get out of the boat?” That’s a reference to the Bible story, Matthew 14:22-31, where Peter saw Jesus walking on the water and called out to him asking if it was The Lord.  Jesus said, "Come" and Peter did… He walked on the water to Jesus, until he took his eyes off of Him and he began to sink. But Jesus never let’s us drown….He grabbed Peter's hand pulled him up.

So, this is me getting out of the boat. Stepping out in faith to share my heart.
The more I thought about it, the more I realized that I should share my testimony, actually more like my life story. You see, I believe The Lord has had His hand on me since the day I was born. When I look back on my life, it’s hard to believe, I am who I am today.  My childhood was pretty wonky… I feel that without The Lord and the prayers of my grandmother, I would not be where I am today. I was a statistic in the making, but thank The Lord, He had a better plan all along!

While I was thinking about my life and childhood, I felt I should write it out and share it. One, it will be good to have all of these memories recorded. Two, it’s a wonderful testimony of how God turned my life from awful into something wonderful. So, I’m going to start with what I’ve been told, then move on to what I actually remember. I wish I had done something like this when my mom and grandmother were living, that way I could’ve verified the information. Oh, well, it is what it is….Here we go!

My mother was an only child and was a strong willed red head. I’m sure she had her own set of struggles growing up. She graduated from Pacific High School in Los Angeles.  It was a private Christian school. My grandmother did her best to provide a good solid moral foundation for my mother. Yet, being 17 and an only child she was a bit spoiled and rebellious. One night, my mother decided she wanted to go out and have some fun. She hit Colorado Blvd, in Pasadena, with some friends to check out the “cruise scene”. Colorado Blvd. was famous for being the local cruise strip and you may know if from the Tournament of Roses Parade on New Year's Day. If I have the story straight, she met my father while he was out riding on his motorcycle.  She went for a ride with him and not long after that night, my mother found herself expecting…yep… that would be me. In the sixties, you didn’t have children out of wedlock, at least that’s what I was told. So, my mother and father got married.

I came along on October 6th, 1965.Wow! That was a LONG time ago…. Childbirth was quite different back then.  As an anesthesia, my mother was given gas and I was delivered with the help of forceps.  What the heck? That is crazy…  Here’s an odd tidbit of information about me…. I have two bald spots on either side of my head, each in the shape of a circle.  One about the size of a dime and the other about the size of a quarter. I figured it was probably from the forceps when they delivered me. Strange, right?
From what I was told, my father did not treat my mother well, and they were divorced soon after I was born. Of course, I don’t remember where we were living at the time, I think it was somewhere in Pasadena, CA.

Here are some snapshots…. The top two pictures are me with my mother and father. I think they were both Easter pictures. Just look at those hairstyles! Wow! How in the world did she get her hair to stay up so high?

The bottom left picture is me and mom on my 2nd birthday. I did have a picture with my father, but I had to put the one in with my mom, her hair was too much to pass on! I’m kinda enthralled with it. The bottom right picture is my 3rd birthday with my great-grandmother, Ora, me, mom and my grandmother.  I thought that picture was pretty cool, with 4 generations of my family.
So, back to my second birthday, like I said, my father was there for my birthday party. And….Guess what? Nine months later, my sister was born. I don’t even want to know…. They did get married again before my sister was born, but then just like the first time, they divorced soon after. So, my sister and I have the same father from different marriages. Yeah… I told you things were a bit wonky.

When I was in kindergarten, we were living in Pasadena, CA. It was right across the street from a church. I loved going to that church and I always dragged my sister with me. :)  They had vacation bible school and I had so much fun playing games and singing songs.

The big earthquake of 1971 hit when we lived there. I remember waking up and going into the kitchen and the cupboards were flying open and dishes were crashing to the ground. I wasn't scared or worried, earthquakes to this day really don't bother me. I guess when you've grown up with them they don't bother you.

One day, my father must have come for a visit and I sat on his motorcycle, I thought it was pretty cool. I was wearing that purple outfit my sister and I are wearing below in the picture. My mom had a thing for dressing us the same. There must have been an argument between her and my father, because next thing I know, my mom was yelling at me. I almost got hit as my father was peeling out of the driveway. Not one of those sweet mushy memories… It looks like my father showed up here and there for holidays and birthdays when I was very young.
By the time I was in first grade, we moved again. It was right across the street from a school. I really liked being able to play at the playground. I have a slightly embarrassing memory from there. I was kissed by a boy for the first time, I was sooo young!!  I was teasing this older boy on recess. He was playing catch with a friend, then all of a sudden, he planted a kiss, right on the lips! I was shocked, embarrassed, mortified. So, what did I do? I ran to the girl’s bathroom, of course! I did my best to avoid him after that! I would walk the long way home, so I wouldn't pass by him. Isn’t it funny the things you remember…

Isn't it funny how we remember life events by what grade we are in, not by our age? My hubby's the same way.

So...in second grade, we lived in Arcadia, CA. I was in a club called Blue Birds…I’m pretty sure it was like Girl Scouts Club. Why was that important to me? Probably because,  I enjoyed doing the crafts and projects to earn badges.

One Christmas, I was given an awesome sparkly purple bicycle. It had a banana seat with tall handlebars and tassles.  I wish I had a picture of it…It was sooo cool, but it was a little too big for me. I was trying it out in the driveway, lost control and ran it right into a big tree! I was fine, but my pride was bruised a bit…

Another memory I had while living there... I was waiting for my friend to come over and play. I had walked down to the end of the street to see if she was coming. (By myself?? !!! I was SIX or SEVEN! What? I would never have let my children do that!! It was such a different time then, although not that different as you’ll see…) While I was waiting, a man came up to me on a motorcycle and asked if I wanted a ride. Scared the crap out of me! All I remember is screaming NOOOOO!!!! And running home as fast as I could!! Thank you, Lord, for your protection.  That was not the only time he protected me from being kidnapped.

Here’s a few more gems…. Mom in her go go boots and shag hairstyle.
2nd grade 1972
As you can see, we didn’t stay in one place for long… I don’t know why, but that was just the way it was. Sometime during the 2nd grade, we moved to Redondo Beach, CA. My mom was a waitress, she did that kind of work most of my childhood. My sister and I were pretty much left on our own. I was 8 or 9 and my sister was about 5 or 6 years old. We rode our bikes all over the place and went to the beach anytime we wanted. We didn’t have a babysitter, at least I don’t recall one. I just dragged my sister wherever I went. This kind of freaks me out, I don’t understand this at all, young children just roaming the streets??? Apparently, this was acceptable during that time period. Either that, or my mom couldn’t afford someone to watch us. I don’t know. I could never just leave my kids without any supervision. That is seriously scary to me! But we seemed pretty carefree and just had a lot of fun. It apparently didn’t bother us, we were just too young to know better.

While living down there, mom met this hippie guy....he seemed nice, but he a little weird... This began my mom’s hippie stage in life. I also believe this was when my mom started partying more and using drugs. Life got more interesting…

We moved into a new house in Redondo Beach.  It was a big house, we shared it with another single mom and her two daughters.  Her daughters were practically the exact same age as my sister and I. We had tons of fun together. We played dress up, rode bikes, roller skated, and got into trouble from time to time. We even set up lemonade stands in front of the house. I think having others to play with distracted us from what was going on with mom. Looking back, she spent a lot of time on the balcony with friends… partying and doing drugs.

During the middle of 3rd grade we took a vacation…What? Who does that? Well, life continued to get more and more interesting....

To be continued...

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Lori -thestonybrookhouse
Lori -thestonybrookhouse

I have been blogging for about 4 years and I enjoy sharing all the things that go on here at The Stonybrook House. From building to decorating, crafting and cooking, and so much more. I enjoy gardening and a healthy lifestyle. Most importantly I love The Lord Jesus my Savior and my wonderful hubby of 28 years!