By Rosie Preston
I recently read read an article written by a man who calls himself Sean of the South, who was replying to a reader who had reacted to his article about using a four-letter word. I’d rather not use that word in this column, since I don’t want any haters coming at me, either.
Sean gave a rather lengthy answer that touched me because he put his childhood fears, the many times he felt left out because his family was different. He also mentioned that his dad had taken his own life. Yet when he ended his story, he told the reader that no matter how much he may hate him for putting a four-letter word in his article, Sean was never going to be a hater. It is my opinion that he was deciding to choose love.
Sean has a place on his page where a reader can co-mment, and I wrote the following response:
“This article about someone condemning you to ‘where the devil lives’ just made me do some very deep thinking. Usually, I’m just wandering around in my house or yard or at my weekly therapy for a broken knee, so I admit that I get sidetracked. My family thinks it’s funny when I say ‘refrigerator’ when I intended to say ‘microwave!’
“They don’t get me! I quickly have turned into a senior citizen, and I wouldn’t believe it myself if it weren’t for having to look in the mirror! Then there’s the fact my grandchildren produced beautiful great-grandchildren who keep me grounded when I think I may take flight and live alone on a tropical island. I can imagine breaking coconut shells, and there would be a beautiful beach, there on my bedside table every morning there would be fresh and healthy food without me having to have lifted a finger to prepare it.
“When my friend and I were in grammar schools we had a little neighborhood club. Of course, we had club fees, which made us feel important and gave validation to our weekly meeting. We weren’t just playing around – we even had a financial plan. For what reason, I’ll never know!
“We would put some change in one of those old metal band-aid boxes. Eventually, the club quit meeting, but there were consequences, even though we were very young. The little band-aid box that held less than $2 was forgotten about until it was brought back to my attention while I was in high school.
“I’ll never forget the consequences, and how astonished I was to come back to me years later. One of the girls told one of my friends that I was a thief! I was beyond embarrassment.
“I can’t remember stealing anything but a candy bar as my parent’s checked out to pay for groceries. The candy was (and still is) stacked just to meet a child’s eyes, and it is a good way to let the child buy candy before leaving the store. I had asked my parents for a candy bar and the answer was no. I was about five years old when I picked up a Butterfinger and had planned on sharing it with my younger sister.
“We arrived home and I took my sister to our room and showed her the candy bar and told her we could share. It didn’t happen, because she immediately told my wrongful act to our parents. My daddy made me go to the store and stand and give the candy bar back and say that I was sorry. Was I ever sorry – I think that broke me!
“After much research, I finally found out what I was accused of stealing by the gossip girl – the little metal band-aid box. We found it years later tucked in the insulation of an attic where we usually had our club meetings.
“It is amazing what people will hold inside them for years, and I wondered if she had waited all this time to throw me under the bus. The little metal box had not been stolen but lost. So I have learned there is truth in the little wooden monkey keychains my dad used to hold his keys. One monkey covered its ears (hear no evil), the second money covered its eyes (see no evil), and the third monkey covered its mouth (speak no evil).
“It’s never too late to learn, and as I tell my family many times, I need forgiveness for what I may have said or done. After all, I am not above God’s word found in scripture which shows us the way to live.
Keep Smiling, Rosie
Please send me a poem or short story at email@example.com. I would love to publish it!