More than 20,000 days of my life have passed and the world hasn’t ended as my parents claimed it would, saving out only those that conformed to their specific religiocity. Yet it still may, but now I believe it will be by man’s hands or nature’s, not god’s. My parents were missionaries. They started in the Philippines. In the early 50′s they traveled the panhandle of Florida—Apalachacola and Sopchoppy—with baby-me in tow, in an Airstream Wee Wind silver bullet about the size of a Twinkie. By the time I was 12, and with the assassination of JFK, I remember that I stopped believing in a lot of things particularly words and declarations of truth and timelines and promises.
My brother and I each found our own ways to escape. The easy way out for me was marriage. I was 18 and ill-prepared for everything. Sex, marriage, babies, jobs, commitment, budgeting, independence, housekeeping, taxes, haircare; I missed being a single 20-something and went straight from childhood to mid-30s divorced mother of two. I told myself stories that made it better and somehow managed a decent living in the tech-world of Silicon Valley, keeping my daughter in Laura Ashley bedding and my son in near-best computer equipment.
Over the years I had 2.3 marriages, 2 children, countless one or three night stands during the Year of Men and Madness, a number of great jobs with people I admired, and lived in about 40 places—and still, I am not sure exactly where I am going but I know this; my soul is forever entangled with my children, even today as they are fully capable adults. I am consumed these days with a near-frantic concern about the world they will inherit. I’m stuck in thoughts I don’t want to think and wonder what action I can take to change the outcomes I fear.
Update 2017: Oh how things have changed…