Mom runs out of the house in a panic toward the road, if she had given it any thought she would have known right where I was. I was just making my way up the back steps to my Granny's back door as my Grandpa scooped me up, "Poop deck!" (a nick-name from my Grandpa) I am thrilled, I giggled with joy! As he would start to drink, he would pick up his old guitar and
begin to sing. It was then he would yell out, "Poop-deck, come sing with Grandpaw!" Mom was, surely, relieved with my safety. My grandparents had a special attachment to me, because, one; we lived 2 houses down and, two; there was a dynamic in my own home of secrecy and deceit. We always seem to cater to, or pay the extra attention to, the child who needs us the most, as with my Mother. I also had very black hair, just like my grandfather, and I loved the biter greens of the gardens, as he did, and would sit for hours and listens to him sing and just loved his very being as he did mine. And every chance I got I would slip away and go straight to his house! He not only bought me my first Easter dress, but, also, the very first bike I got he made payments on and bought, which was a HUGE sacrifice, partially because, he and my Grandmother still had children at home. The day of his funeral they had to remove me because I wanted to be in the casket with him, I had a deep love for him. And that love, as well, for my Granny continued through the years. In these early years my Granny told my Mother she had a premonition my destiny would be to help and serve others. I must have been 5 or 6 when, at a traveling fair, I came upon a trainer beating an elephant, as I was passing going to the next ride. I had skipped ahead of Mom and don't remember exactly where Dad was. As he raised his hand to strike again something in me did not care about my own safety or how small I was all I cared about was how helpless and defenceless and trapped that elephant was! I ran and stood between them and bowed up and said "Don't you hit him again!" Well, the man was not so happy and, let's just say, he quickly asked me to move, which was when my father suddenly appeared, a talent of his, HE DID not LIKE his tone with me; it turned bad quickly! Another talent of his-don't mess with little girl or there will be trouble. I have never been able to stand by and see the person in the room who is alone or trapped or is odd or looks different be picked on or humiliated or not be befriended. It is just not in my nature. I felt a draw to humanity from a small age and it continued throughout my life and up until I met and married Kenny. Everything we did we based on that premise. So here I am 45 yrs old, in one of the most remote parts of country (the mountains and hollows of western North Carolina), a small town, hardly more than a village, no larger city within 40 miles, hardly any cell signal, and with the stigma of an outsider. God how have I found myself here? How effective can I be? I have no voice. I have fallen off the face of the earth. Who can I serve. My very nature is of no good. I invite people to dinner, a free meal, I serve you, we visit, coffee, dessert! (I promise it was not a Amway party!!) Can't even get people to show up. It baffles me? Have you ever questioned your given talents and skills? We all have them. We all recognize them if we look for them. Do you see them but question sometimes God, "how will I ever use them?" I reflect on that Denali and I said I would explain why that truck meant so much more than just a truck. It was means by which alot of people who had NO ONE got to the doctor, social services, immigrations, grocery store, a meal at our house, church. I remember, as we detailed it to return it, I thought we may be broke, but we still have our dignity, I thought about those people and how they would make their way around town. We would be alright, because, no matter what we lost, Kenny and I could fit in just about in any situation, these people fit in no where. It made me sad. So today I am grateful for the these mountains and isolation and I am grateful for my voice, because I am able to share my story and use what God has called me to do and that is serve.