I have always been an observer, never feeling quite human. From my earliest memories, I was always trying to figure out what makes people do the things they do. I still spend most of my time in a constant state of amazement.
When I was barely able to sit up on my own, I remember sitting on the kitchen floor playing with blocks and listening to my family discuss their beliefs. My Mom was a New Age hippie, Grandma was a devout Jehovah’s Witness, and Grandpa was an Atheist. Very different philosophies, and each person was convinced they were right. As I sat and listened, I distinctly remember having my own dialog with one of my Guides: Fascinating! They all think they are right, but none of them are. What makes people act this way? My Guide didn’t divulge any secret knowledge, he just talked with me as I tried to analyze the situation.
When I was just a toddler we went to clear out a recently deceased relative’s house. There was a barking dog in the neighbor’s fenced yard, and Grandma wasn’t very happy that Mom wasn’t carrying me. “The baby! You need to pick up the baby to keep her safe!” I could hear that she wasn’t really concerned, that she knew I was fine, but she still put all this energy into objecting to my being allowed to walk on my own. That’s odd, I thought, Why would she waste her energy declaring something she knows isn’t true? Several years later Mom was talking with a friend about when kids start retaining memories, and I shared this one. She recalled the situation, but was shocked that I did also.
I was playing in the dirt digging holes behind the house when I had my first past-life memory. I was 3-years-old. Something in the moist soil smelled of death, and that smell threw me into a memory of falling into a pit of bodies, not quite dead myself. I remembered the cold of their dead skin, and the smell, and then rising out of my body. That was awful! I don’t want to do that again! When the memory faded, I decided to go play somewhere else. The holocaust wasn’t any more fun in hindsight.
I’m smart, but I’m even more competitive. My cousin, Tim, who is 2 months younger, started reading when we were three. After a couple weeks of hearing about how amazing he was, I couldn’t take it anymore, and decided I needed to read, too. It took me half an hour to get through Hop on Pop, with my Mom telling me I didn’t have to force it, but I made it all the way through. It was hard. When Tim started writing his own books a few months later, I let him have that one.
The first day of Kindergarten was my first real exposure to a group of kids my age. I really only knew my cousins before that. I remember thinking I’m supposed to be one of these things, huh? They’re really loud and they smell funny. It took me several days to figure out why the teacher was telling us you can understand a story by looking at the pictures. Why wouldn’t you just read the words? Oh, they can’t read… right. School was my personal hell for the years I managed to stick with it.
It was around that time that my Grandma was talking about the calm, loving Jesus. Things like Prince of Peace and Lamb of God, meek and loving. I thought to myself that isn’t anything like the Jesus I knew. Maybe she’s talking about a different Jesus. The guy I knew was quite the rabble rouser.