My hands are shaking, it’s the middle of the night. I stare out at everything through my minds eye, wondering what to write. I remember as a child, thinking to myself, “Why does everyone worry about what they will do when they grow older?” I was too busy enjoying life. It turns out that several years ago I hated myself for not answering that very question, not having planned ahead to a career or home or family, why hadn’t I gotten it right? I mean everyone else around me have homes and families, and very successful careers. And I hated myself for not being just like them. I felt frowned upon for not being like, or “living up” to my own potential. So, I hated myself, because I thought no one else loved me, not the way I love myself. Until one day a friend of mine , told me with utmost sincerity, “You, my friend, are one of the best writers I’ve ever met!”, it was as though he’d thrown me a safety net, and I was eager to scurry off, so I grabbed on to the net and climbed, until I grew my dignity back and slowly began to find, that mine has not been a worthless life, but I have had many experiences throughout my life, so much so, that I began to write. And what I’ve found has been an incredible transformation, I’ve actually taken pride in something, for the first time in my life. Today I think of myself as I writer and a man of God, and now I write because, a writer, writes……but I will prepare for God, by considering all possibilities in this , the “Story of My Life”. God has always been a presence for me , something I felt inside, something so honest that it kept me sane, kept me in a world of confusing truths and beautiful dreams that sometimes come to light, but mostly he has given me the desire to learn everything, through voracious appetites, and mad desire to write, after all a writer …..writes! Now, my hands are shaking and my desire has gotten here, in front of this blank page, anticipating the words to come to me in this “The Story Of My Life!”
I suppose this story must begin with a simple fact, my mother was white and my father was black. I don’t pretend to attack, that is not my intent, in fact, I find things so much more easily now, since my self esteem is back, that I much prefer at the beginning, tit for tat. My very first memory of anything at all is of being in my crib and soothing my gums by gnawing on the little plastic runner that ran along the top of the crib door or sliding gate. It soothed my gums and apparently stopped me from crying much as a child, or so I’m told, this from my mother who has helped me with the early days of this story I now convey, with shaky hands gone away. Aside from that, my earliest memories are of Germany, where I was born to Military parents and began school on a military base named Scwaebisch Gmuend, where I have such fond memories of playing in the woods with my brother and sisters, in fact, playing anywhere and everywhere as much as I could. It was such a carefree time and we were so insulated from the outside world by living on this military base that it all comes back to me as some Samuel Clemens tale, with playful abandon in everything we did. Sitting in the cherry trees after baseball practice, or sledding down “Farmers Hill” after the first winters snow, or playing on the rope swing near the edge of the woods or playing cards with my whole family when the electricity was out, these things I remember fondly, now let’s get down to what the whole Black / White thing was about.
I have begun writing this at the behest of a fellow writer, who is curious about my life, along with several others, who are curious about what it was like growing up in a mixed family during the 1960’s and 70’s. The curiosity about the black and white thing is what I will be tackling here. I will be adding pages from time to time in pursuit of answering those questions that any curious onlooker may have. I intend to do this with complete disregard for decorum or appropriateness for there is no way to write about racism in America from a black AND white point of view by doing otherwise. I do not mean to offend, but the very subject matter may be offensive to some regardless. The above is just a preface to see if I have it in me to write this. So, for now, I leave it to you, shall I continue? Please, tell me what to do?!……….I am Dartanion2……….and I await your decision………cheers………t xx