Monday, November 21, 2011

Black Sheep

As a child, I used to wonder why I was treated differently from the rest of the family. I used to wonder why, my brothers or my sisters had better clothes, received more love or better treatment and received better gifts at Christmas. I would wonder why my little brothers or sisters hardly every got punished for their mistakes and also why when I did something wrong I was punished more severely than the rest. As I grew older and got out on my own I used to wonder why I wasn't , invited to certain family events or functions. I wondered from a distance why, after I left that my brothers or sisters learned how to drive a car and latter got new cars. (Because as a teen, I never received that same type of treatment) I used to ask myself these many questions, am I so different or wrong to deserve this treatment? Why doesn't Mom or Dad love me like they love the rest? Why was Mom or Dad so mean too me? Are they concern or do they even care about my feelings? I remember countless nights either crying or praying asking God to explain to me why was I so different and why was I treated this way. After all this is my family, the people that are suppose to love me.
As I think back on my life  as a child  most of it is was like a blur and most of my childhood  wasn't very good. I remember the strange looks my father used to give me and also remember how much I was talked about when my mother had discussion with her family or friends. I also remember looking at my brothers and sisters wondering why some was so tall and others had color skin or hair so different from my own. My mother used to say this to me as a child when I did something wrong," I think the doctor made a mistake and I think I brought home the wrong child". There were times I wondered to myself, did she really mean it when she said those mean words or did she say these things because she was mad or upset with me? I know I wasn't a perfect child, as a matter of fact I was far from it, but neither was my brothers or sisters. We all gave our parents our share of problems and made many mistakes. But even while making mistakes I was punished more severely than my brothers or sisters. My father used to say the reasons why he was so hard on me and beat me so severely, was because I was the oldest, therefore I should set the example for the rest. At that time I had no choice but to except that explanation, because he was right and I was indeed the oldest. But boy did it hurt when he punished me for not only for mine but also my brothers or sisters' mistakes.
When I think about my father, I think about how intimidating he looked to me in fact I was very scared of him. Back in those days all men had big hand, big shoulders and had a look that would scare any child. When growing up in the seventies, it was common for men to be hard on their boys and I credit my father for molding me into the man I am today. It wasn't until I was forty years old did I find out that the man that raised me and the man I thought was my father, wasn't really my real father.When I first heard about this I wasn't prepared to deal with it, because at that time I was dealing with more pressing issues. But after time and after my life settled down, I was able to think more about my past as a child. After I let the thought of the man that raised me soak in,then I realized that it was really a fact that he wasn't my father. One thought or question came to mind, Why did my mother keep this a secret and why did they lie? If you never been in my position its hard to explain how it feels to be different, not loved or appreciated in your own family. The days which turn into weeks, then latter into months and years of rejection is a very humbling experience. Those experiences, combined with divorce, death in your family and a loss of a good paying job in a bad economy would try anybody patience.

 Though it all I am very grateful too God, that those bad experiences didn't ruin or destroy me. Instead they only made me more  patient ,stronger, determine and faithful to God. Because in the end he was the only one I truly could depend on. Sometimes when we seek a parents or a persons love we forget that Gods love is everlasting. God our Father in Heaven is the best parent, best friend and his love for us last forever. He will never forsake us, never leave us and even when we sin he is always willing to forgive us. God will never make his children feel like outcast or black sheep. That's why I love him so much and grateful that he allowed me to suffer, so that I may appreciate his love and his grace.

When I was younger I used to love watching television shows like, The Cosby Show, Sanford and Son, Good Times and others, because in each of them they had very strong families values. In each of these shows these families had their share of trials, tribulations, drama and pain. In some of the shows some of the families had to over come death, drugs or other family issues. But through it all they all stuck together, never turned their back on their family members and weathered every storm together. They never forgot one very important fact, that they were family. Each of these people in their families had a unconditional love that missing in the world today. I used to envy those people in those television shows, because in each of  those families, it had the type of  love that was and is now missing in my own family.
When you think about the word family, many things should come to mind. You may think of the words , loving, caring, patient or supportive .  In the  Webster Dictionary, the definition for family,( is  a social unit consisting of one or more adults together with the children they care for.) But in reality in  every family there is a favorite and  also there is an out cast or a black sheep. Why you may ask? Well the world we live in now, many men or women will meet someone who already has a child or like my grandmother, would say," A ready made family".  Many people have the thoughts or dreams of having the perfect family, one that's full of love, support and a bond that would  last for a  lifetime. But in the imperfect world we live in, there will always be favorites, there will be some that get more love or attention then their brothers or sisters'. Its sad to say but our parents did have their favorites and if we are not careful  as parents ,we too can carry on this very hurtful  curse or tradition. That's a scar most of us outcast or black sheep's of the family have for a life time. For some it may effect them emotionally forever. Some never get over their past hurts, their parents abuses or their parents mistakes. I have know or have known  many of my friends that are still hunted by their childhood memories. In some of my friends lives their past, has hurt, stunted their growth, affected them emotionally or affected  them in their current relationships and their rearing of their own children.
 With the help of God , I learned from my parents mistakes, by vowing  to be a better parent, by  always telling  the truth to my children or to the children that I am helping raise no matter what it is.  If I happen too meet someone who already has children, I would always be careful not to deceive them. I have learned that every child has the right to know who is their real father or mother. Keeping it a secret or telling them lies to cover up a past sin, should never be an option. My advice too anyone who are dating or considering getting involved with someone who already has children. Love them like you would your own children, treat them with respect and never let them feel like an outsider or a black sheep of the family. After all they are only children and they didn't ask to be here. That's why as adults or responsible parents we have the obligation too  treat all children with the love and respect due to all children. As children, most of us look up to our parents as symbols of perfection.

 When I visualized both my mother or my father, I looked at them as people that could do no wrong. So when I sin, made a mistake or lied, I felt shamed and embarrassed. At times when I made a mistake my parents constantly scolded me and reminded me why it was so important not to sin or lie. Now that I have grown into an adult , I wonder why my parents didn't hold themselves accountable to the same rules or beliefs that they taught me as a child. I was asked very recently, was I mad or bitter because of what I went through or because of my parents mistakes. After some careful thought, I told the person asking me, that everything I went through in my life could have taken me in many different directions some bad and others good. I have had my share of trials, tribulations, rejection, hurt and pain. But some how through it all I remain, humble  from my experiences. I am not (Thanks to God) a person that lives in the past. Its not that I don't remember what I been through, I instead learn from it and use it as motivation to be a better person or a better man. I really feel that God allows all of us to go through different things or experience different types of situations to help us grow stronger. Now that I know that I am a child of God, I am both thankful and grateful that God chose me to go through all those situations. Why? Well from my experiences I can tell others, about my true life testimony. Maybe through my pain or suffering I can help others and in the process save a couple of souls. Maybe if people could see what Gods love and his light can do to a person considered to be an outcast or a black sheep of his own family, then through me they can witness the true glory of God. Then they too would know that Gods love, Gods light and Gods forgiveness is the best a man or a woman could get or receive. My grandmother had a famous saying, "What's done  in the dark shall come too light". Which means the truth will come to light and what has been done in the past will be revealed in the future .
Have a blessed day,
Jeremiah 33:3 Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.'

1 comment:

  1. I know how it feel to be the Black Sheep of a family, as a child and a teenager I was also treated different from my sister and brother, their were times when I was punished for the things that my siblings did and did not do, if I did not want to be beating I had to do all their chores while they messed around, I could not attend school functions but they did and I did not understand why, Im the one that had my mom back, when I tried to talk to her about the way she was treating me she would get very upset with, throw things at me (she missed though)or I would get punished because she figured that I was talking back to her or being smart but I wasn't, as I grew older I understood why I was treated different than my siblings, my mom seen something in me that she did not see in my siblings, for a long time I resented her for the way she treated me but now we have the best relationship a mother and daughter can have, she is very proud of me because Im the only child that graduated high school, college with an associate degree and now working on my bachelors degree, Im the only child that stayed home and raised my children to be successful, Im the only child thats serving the Lord, Im the only child she can depend on for whatever, I pray everyday that things contiune to stay the way it is between me and my mom because after all that I went through with her she do love me and she no longer treat me like the black sheep of the family and I lover her dearly. God Bless!!!!!!!!!!!!!!