8/07/2011 | Share this article: View CommentsBy Neal Stone ~
This blog is getting long so I am going to split this part into sections.
Can you still feel it? That burning in your mind and the cinders smoldering in your heart? You feel the fear and frustration and know something is wrong. Your soul finds itself bound and hauled away to the prison of despair. Behind the bars of narrow mindedness and in the cell, the prison of darkness called Fundamentalism.
You think you understand fear and paranoia? Let me introduce you. Before we continue forward we must first go back. To understand the fear, paranoia and lack of self-value we must go back a little first and then go forward.
As a toddler I lived in Olympia, WA on a road called Delphi Rd. The house we lived in was owned and built by a sick twisted individual named Dave, my mom's third husband. Dave's idea of punishing children (with his and mom's we totaled 7) was to have the guilty person(s) stand to the side and let them watch those who didn't do anything get whipped by his thick wide belt. Now you're a kid and as are most kids, a tad devious, what would you do? HAVE FUN!!!! But not me, I was the youngest of seven and while I could run and hide, I had to come home sometime and there would be six waiting for me. Dave would intimidate us by making a loop with his belt and then snapping it loudly. A sound I hate to this day. I also hated the sound of his walk. He had a leg missing due to a logging accident so had a crutch and would go step thunk. He also had a wooden leg.
We then moved to the west side of Olympia into a house on Thomas St. I have many fond memories there as a child. We played games, most which we made up, and one of my favorites was called “Bloody Murder” which was basically an intense version of hide and seek you played at night. The only major difference was hide and seek didn't give you three straight nights of nightmares. GOD I LOVE THAT GAME!!!! If you have children you want to traumatize for life just let me know. I would be more than glad to help. And yes, I am joking! LOL
But there were many bad memories too. The darkest journey of my life would begin in this house. It was here I would learn the meaning of fear.
My mom would come home one day and find Dave doing something he should not be doing. Something real bad and as I write this I have a few faint flashbacks, but hard to tell exactly what the memory is. For the time being I will just say Dave was a twisted creep. Mom threw him out of the house and soon after the nightmare really began.
After mom threw Dave out of the house (except for his wooden leg which we buried. What can I say? We hated the fucker!) we would wake up to people on top of the house jumping, yelling and screaming. Now keep in mind this was a large two story house built in the style of an old farmhouse. We would also have nights where we would be in the living room and the cat would sit and stare at the door. We could hear someone on the porch moving around, but they never knocked or rang the doorbell. We would sit there terrified. Other nights a car would drive by slowly with the headlights turned off and would circle the block and drive by again only slowing down at our house as it passed. Sometimes they would circle multiple times.
So yeah, I know fear, I know despair, I know terror! I know what it is like to hide under the bed and cry in fear. I know what it is to duck down and lay on the floor as a car drives by. Every time you hear a car, any car, you crouch in fear. Peaking through the curtains to see if you need to hide or not. Clutching your mother tightly wanting her to protect you from the bad men coming to hurt you. For most children this is just a bad dream you wake up from. For me, it was all real and there was no waking up. Today this part of my life has passed, but it is now the nightmare I wake up from in the night. Dreams in the night where something is hunting me, coming for me. Hiding in fear and terror. At a minimum I have one nightmare a month sometimes more. Sometimes I over come the nightmare, sometimes I can't get back to sleep.
So here I am not even ten years old and no self-value and afraid. I needed a hero to save me. Someone to look up to. Enter my current step-dad.
My step-dad, who I will refer to as SD from here on, stayed with our family sleeping on the couch. So now the story continues where we left of last time.
It was shortly after the Star Wars craze of 1977. People lining up around the block. We saw the movie and bought the merchandise as all good parents do. And as all good kids do, we played with and destroyed all the original toys which would be worth hundreds of dollars now.
It was a warm summer day. I was outside killing storm troopers with my lightsaber. Basically a flashlight with a long plastic tube on it. I was one kick ass Jedi! Sometimes I would get bored and find my Space 1999 Eagle One ship and fly it around.
Unknown to me SD was inside and answering a knock at the door. Two men with bibles were standing there and he asked them in. it was a pastor and his assistant pastor. They were starting a new church downtown and renting the women's club for their services. The pastors name was Steve and his assistant was Ron.
SD came looking for me and checked in my bedroom and I wasn't there so came outside and found me. He brought me in and introduced me to the two men. I then went to my bedroom to play with my home made future city inspired by Logan's Run. Love that movie! I used those dome shaped containers you got out of vending machines.
The two men wanted to talk to me some more. So SD went outside looking for me and didn't find me so came into my bedroom to get me. I would learn alter that fucking with people was fun. I now work in tech support and make a living at it.
They sat me down and got out their bibles. They took me down something called the “Roman's Road” and told me all about Jesus and about being a sinner and that I needed to be saved. I was around 12 years of age, but mentally more like 5. So I really didn't understand, but recall crying big tears as I asked Jesus into my heart. After all I was a worthless sinner (nice thing to say to a kid) and deserved hell. Once again my self-value was being chipped away. I would learn alter that this was primarily an emotional response and release. I could have just as easily asked Bugs Bunny into my heart and if I really believed I would have gotten the same result.
We would start attending this church and at first it seemed pretty fun and things were going good. I became friends with the preachers kid (PK) and a few others. I felt accepted and loved. SD would eventually become my hero for the time being (and so would Jesus). He would take me to my appointments in Seattle for treating my Epilepsy and would watch over me.
The women's club had these old varnished chairs that made your butt sore and to top it off you would stick to them. I had finally found a place where I was accepted and loved. Where my disability didn't matter. My first Sunday at this church I went forward and professed my faith. I stood there proudly looking into the crowd and eventually at SD who as proudly smiling back never realizing I was staring into the face of my future enemy. Standing next to me was pastor Steve who would soon go from standing beside me to stabbing me in the back and heart. Slowly I was being drawn in. Taken deeply into a prison. I was being taken hostage and I never realized it. I had no idea what I was in for and would soon learn how quickly people can change.
Yes, I know fear, I know despair, I know terror! And I was about to get to know them even better.
Next – Part 2 – Hostage continued.