While visiting my mom and coming back from dinner one night, I was sitting in the backseat of my truck and looking down at my legs. I remember seeing those legs much smaller dangling over my bedside and big crocodile tears swelling up in my eyes. With my wife driving and my mom riding shotgun, I said, “Mom there’s something I never told you about when I was young”. “Oh no” my mom said. Well let me tell you, “I recall having horrible, bring a child to tears, pain in my kidneys, deep throbbing pain that got worse every day. Looking back on it now, my kidneys did appear blocked or were shutting down. I grew weaker, sicker and eventually bed ridden. I was only about seven years old for I don’t remember my brother being in the picture yet”. Why I wonder, my mom and dad didn’t take me to a doctor? Instead, my mom called a minister from her church. The Minister came over and both he and my mom knelt by my bed near my feet and they prayed over me. I remember going to sleep that evening, laying on my side and at some point during the night I opened my eyes. Standing beside my bed was what I am now describing as an Angel. It was light white, transparent, with shape but no features that I understood and very large as I remember. It was so close I could have reached out and touched it. I wonder, could it have been delirium or an over active imagination of a child? Why was the Angel there? To heal me, to protect me from the Angel of Death? I can close my eyes even now and see that Angel standing by my side. I looked for a few seconds and don’t remember feeling scared. I remember trying to give a smile and I closed my eyes and fell back to sleep. I imagine a few hours passed by and I opened my eyes again, hoping the Angel was still there and it was! Except the Angel had moved from my side to the end of the bed by my feet. I was definitely not dreaming or delirious. There it stood, plain as day. Again, I looked and gave a small smile and fell back to sleep. I woke sometime later, my room was becoming light with the sun rising. I still remember thinking as I was waking, was the Angel still there this time? It was! It was standing out in the hallway and it was tall as and wide as the door frame. I could tell that my parents door was open. I hoped my mom could see this. Perhaps this Angel wanted my mom to be assured that her prayers had been heard. I still felt tired, I smiled and went back to sleep. When I woke again, I don’t remember hitting the floor running but I was much better with no pain. I am here to tell this. Again I say, I never mentioned this to my parents. Now, riding in the truck, Forty-seven years later I’m telling my mom. She turned in her seat and looked at me and said, “Son, I did see it”. My mom turned back and didn’t say much else. I turned and looked out the window and thought, in a quiet childlike voice, “Mom, I’m OK”. I feel much better now.
If you have ever had a gnat fly up your nose, remember that feeling as I tell you the following; Elephants are scarred to death of mice, have you ever wondered why such a large pachyderm would have such a reaction to a minuscule rodent? Like you, I don’t have a six foot long snout but just imagine reaching down to slurp up a little H2O or hay even and a vicious rat or mouse runs up your six foot nose, I don’t mean from the outside, I mean internally. Ripping and scratching your snouts soft inner lining, you begin slapping your six footer against a tree trunk, rock, anything to get that thing to come out and then, your eyes bug out, when you realize if it doesn’t come flying out you’re going to have to deal with it when it pops into your mouth. Being a vegan, do you chomp it? Can an Elephant spit? I don’t think so. In evolutionary history this may have only ever happened to one Elephant but there were witnesses, Elephants have a long memory too and evidently they can spin a good yarn because they all know.
A good friend of mine growing up once told me, I am not half the man my father is. I don’t know why nor even what we were discussing but I, I took it to heart. I spent years working hard, trying to be the better man and one day it donned on me, not better, just half. I came to this interesting conclusion while delving in my families genealogy, that genetically I am only half, half my father and half my mother. I came to realize after years of structuring my family tree I was doing it all wrong. I don’t know why, maybe it’s the mathematics factor or just the way every genealogists are trained but we need to stop counting in comfortable whole numbers but complicated fractions. I love genealogy, I love trying to trace all those in my line, paternal and maternal but I’ve come to realize they are not wholly related. I am not related to four million plus people twenty generations out, I am only related to twenty men and some change. As a man, genetically I have an X and Y chromosome, no more, no less. I am related to my father, his father, his father by our Y chromosome, five hundred generations, I am related to five hundred men, directly and their brothers of course.
What about the X? I am half my mother? No! I am related to my mother by one quarter, for my X comes from four different directions. One quarter my fathers maternal and paternal side and one quarter my mothers maternal and paternal side. I am of course related to my mother by one quarter of all her female ancestral line, in saying that, I am related by marriage but not genetically to a single male member of her maternal or paternal line. Now here s the kicker, that no one wants to hear, neither is she. No woman is kin to any man but by woman. Every woman’s last name in essence is handed down from father and peripherally to husband. My mother doesn’t carry her fathers Y chromosome, she’s not truly a Blevins but a Casteel and Robinette, but no, she’s not, for their mothers were not.
We’re related by blood, right? I am directly related to my brother, full blood relations, a sister if I had one, we would be raised as brother and sister of course. Even though my fictitious sister and I have the same mother and father, we are not full blooded, we are only half brother and sister, right off the bat for she carries a larger amount of X chromosomes from both our maternal and paternal lines than I do and they may not even be the same and she does not carry a Y. Genetically, we may only show we have the same mothers.
Here is where those pesky once removed are a generation off. I am related to my fathers forefathers directly, all of their brothers would be my uncles and their male heirs, (ancestral) my cousins, myself, then first, second, third. Then, from myself and my brother, our offspring’s first cousins, second, third, (descendants) their cousins. However, my fictitious sisters children, to my children are actually first cousins once removed, twice removed, third and so on for their male offspring’s lineage, Y chromosomes differ.
The next time you see that your supposedly related to 3 trillion people and knowing full good and well there has never even been that many people on this earth. You can know you are related to most way back and to many and most from many directions. However, taking fractions into account each generation you are related only by one half, then one quarter, one eighth, one sixteenth, thirty-second, sixty-fourth and so on, constantly dividing, diluting and replenishing.
A parent knows their child, innocent or guilty, they know their heart, they helped develop that heart, either by allowing nature to take its course or by nurturingly giving. You will protect that child against any forces good or evil, inside their own home or out and hopefully, for their own good. A child looks like us, may act and talk like us as we try to lead them by example. We give them all the instruction we can throughout their lives, wanted, needed, received or squandered but we hold close, cherish memories and hopes for their future. We as parents have faith that God will watch over them, guide and protect them, where we may have fell short, can’t see or reach.
God knows our heart, no matter how we may act out, or deny him. Who do we look like? God made us in his image. Not a white haired old bearded man, we are the only ones limited to that ideal and this earth suit. He made us with the desire to seek out his counsel, where we so freely gave and sometimes shoveled to ours. He created life and all that we need here to create whatever it takes to live it. He gave us his word that we may have instruction. He gave us his son that we may be lead by example and he watches over us, cares for us, provides for us, whether we like it, want it or not. I for one, desire to know him, to be like him, and have a natural curiosity for those that brought us.
I have an unbelievable knack to overthink everything and an unreasonable inability to share those thoughts with anyone. So! In my own words, I can drone on and on about nothing-sometimes. So! I realize I need MyChel to make sure my words are properly punctuated – not grammertized. I am of the firm belief that if you’re going to write it, it should be done with a fine rapier point. “Sword point or Missile?” she whispered under her breath. “What are you doing?” I scream out in pain, “You’re changing my words, it changes the meaning”. MyChel replied, “You write like your hacking at the story with a rusty axe”. So! But? Oh! Hey! What you’re saying are my words are rich but they just slide right off the page if they are not properly punctumacted (leave it. It’s a word).
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