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To start with. i think i am autistic.  Never formally diagnosed, Asperger's Syndrome seems the most reasonal explanation for much of my strange behavior through out life.  Some things don't fit.  Autists don't like lies or lying.  I lie.
A few years back i started to get more truthful, but i still slip.  A lifelong coping mechanism is hards to drop.Autists are good with their hands, or machines, or numbers, or art.  Not me, i have zero talent with any of those things.  I may be an idiot but i am no savant.  

On the other hand, i am drawn to things rather than people.  I spend a lot of time repeating behaviors thAt seem meaningless to most people, and even to me if i have moved on to some other obsession.  My boundaries are very dimly drazwn.  I am pretty clueless about social rules and relationships.  I prefer my own company to that of other people.

Partly because of this, my memories of my life are few, disjointed, distorted, or fabricated.  My adopting mother was a shutterbug, so there are hundreds of photographs taken of me throughout my childhood which allows me to create a story.  But they are all still pictures and do not show what actions i might have taken.  There are group photos of myself and my four siblings.  But what was i doing before and after the picture was taken.  Did we talk, joke, play, share?  Most likely i went my own way, back into my own world.

I was adopted, i suppose, because my a-mother had had a series of miscarriages and a still birth.  I was adopted to replace the still birth, so my nother would not go home childless.  Three years later she gave birth to two healthy boys; two years later a boy and girl.

In those first three years, we lived on Chichikov Island, a large, nearly uninhabited place in Southeastern Alaska.  Beside the forest primeval, their were miners, Thlinket Indians, and a small town named Craig.  All were on the opposite side of the island from us, my father and mother, one of my mother's single brothers, a young childless couple, and me.  I am guessing that i was very happy.  Once, i've been told, a plane load of college girls crashlanded near us and we had to put them up for a few days in our three hovels.  The experience was trazumatic enough that i developed a stammering problem that lasted for the next forty years.  There were, of course, no stores, no school, no churches. nothing but a large waterfall from which the three adult males produced electricity which supplied t mine i never saw.

When my mother became pregnant we returned to "the states" and lived four years on part of my mother's father's old homestead where her faather. sister, and two brothers still lived in widely separated houses.  This was close to Marysville, Washington; we had mpved to within two miles of the place where i was born.  Noone ever told me that.

A few ;hundred acres of the homestead had been converted into a fish farm by one of  my mother's brothers.  It had about a half dozen ponds, a stream, a hatchery, and at the lower (western) end, a water mill that looked a hundred years old.  People could fish there for a fee, and fish (rainbow trout) were sold to local markets.  Four years later the first of my very few sacred experiences took place in front of the old mill with its now unmoving wheel.

Would you say we had an atttached garage if the truck was actually parked in the living room?  We lived in a house that was so small i think it had onlly A small kitchen and a small living room (with the truck takling up almost half the livingroom space.)  I had occasion to revisit the house, now abandoned and overgrown with bushes and weeds, fifty years later and confirmed that my dim memories were not too far off.  The kitchen had a wood stove, no electricity, and no running water.  My four siblings were bnorn while we were living there.  I was told that i took care of them because our mother was often ill.  I remember none of this.
I remember no religious activity during this time -- i'm sure there were bedtime prayes (how easy it is to fall to my knees beside my bed at night), grace at meals, and other occasional prayers.  I am told that my mother's father, a member of the state church of Sweden spent a lot of weekends looking for the true faith and that he took me with him.  I remember none of this.  Did we ever go to the Gospel Hall?  More than likely, yes.

I went to first grade in Arlington, the nearest town.  I think i liked it.  I think i always liked school.
We got fresh milk at lunch. from the government (It was still officially the Great Depression).

The school bus went down Main Street,  Sitting at  the streets end, like a castle dominating the peasant hovels below,sat the Gospel Hall.

During the next three years we moved four times, following my father's electrician jobs for the defense industry, for we were now at war.  We hopped from one little town on the Sound to another: Oak Harbor, Gig Harbor, back to rural Snohomish County, then to Mukilteo.  At each place i went to Sunday school and Bible school.  I think i went without complaint because i liked it.  They were all fundamentalist Baptist and Nondenominational facilities.  I got to know the Bible pretty well, and picked up a fundamentalist interpretation along with that knowledge.

In 1943, the tide of war seemed to have  turned in our favor.  Service men, Dad thought, would soon be returning and wantining their old jobs back, defense industry jobs would dry up.  He decided that we should return to Alaska.

Jusr before we left for Alaska we went to visit the homestead.  The trout farm had been transformed into "victory gardens," but a muddy stream oozed down through the the former ponds which were now planted with crops  There was  a boy about my age with me, i don't know who he was.  We were playing in the mud, catching water skippers.  Suddenly everything stopped, there was total stillness.  My senses were suspended except for sight, and i could see only pure whiteness.  I heard nothing, touched nothing, tasted and smelled nothing.  A feeling of total peace claimed me, it was pure happiness, it seemed.  It was pure pleasure.  It seemed that i  stood there for hours soaking up the sunlight, oblivious to every thing.  But it must have only seconds, the other boy did not seem to notice anything.  I did not speak of this for many years.  There was no message, or maybe there was and i didn't get it.

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( 20 comments — Leave a comment )
Sep. 12th, 2015 12:32 pm (UTC)
That's such a complex childhood - and the experience/vision you describe is something I'll ponder. Thank you for sharing it.
Sep. 12th, 2015 08:59 pm (UTC)
Thank you.
Complex childhood? I will ponder that.
Perhaps all childhoods are complex.
Sep. 12th, 2015 01:50 pm (UTC)
Thank you for sharing this...it always helps me put things in to perspective knowing some background.
Your experience of pure happiness and suspension of time is a bit like that of the mystics.
Sep. 12th, 2015 09:01 pm (UTC)
You are welcome. I am never sure of myself when posting personal stuff. I appreciate your appreciation
Sep. 12th, 2015 02:18 pm (UTC)
What a interesting walk down your memory lane. Perhaps you dissociated for a minute and that is what the white light was.
Sep. 12th, 2015 09:09 pm (UTC)
Thank you, I am open to many interpretations of that experience. Perhaps i was scared or angry about moving again and the Universe was trying to tell it would be a great experience. It was.
Sep. 12th, 2015 02:33 pm (UTC)
Thank you. I love hearing stories of these sorts of moments. And how fascinating to me, from my different experiences, that the moment of presence, pause and joy came in or with a sensory whiteout.

I am thinking, likely wrongly, certainly impertinently, that that may have formed your sense of what transcendent moments must be....

Edited at 2015-09-12 02:34 pm (UTC)
Sep. 12th, 2015 09:16 pm (UTC)
I know that that experience has colored other remotely similar experiences i have had. And also i keep reframing the experience. Suspension of the senses was not part of the story as i have told or thought it before. Right now it seems real.
Sep. 12th, 2015 10:31 pm (UTC)
Oh, interesting. So your current understandings of your desires, and your understanding of your past experience, may affect each other. That makes all the sense.
Sep. 12th, 2015 11:49 pm (UTC)
Sep. 13th, 2015 12:33 am (UTC)
Thank you for sharing this part of your journey. You are an amazing man (I know you will say you aren't). I so appreciate your journey.
Sep. 13th, 2015 12:44 am (UTC)
Thank you, Jeff. Your journal and books have inspired me to do this. My kids and grandkids might like to know who i thought i was. And i am finding pleasure in sharing the story with others.
Sep. 13th, 2015 02:40 am (UTC)
That is quite wonderful Bobby. Yours has been a rich journey of depth and discovery. I look forward to hearing more!
Sep. 13th, 2015 06:22 am (UTC)
As i said, you are partly responsible for this. I'm glad you enjoy it.
Sep. 13th, 2015 05:37 am (UTC)
thanks for sharing some of your early memories with us, Bobby! It´s like reading a book and I wished, you would have continued.

Sep. 13th, 2015 06:12 am (UTC)
Thank you, there is a second installment, and there might be more. Love, Bob.
Sep. 19th, 2015 02:48 pm (UTC)
I have been reading this series of autobiographical posts this evening and wanted to say "thank you" for sharing them. There has been a lot in them that I found fascinating and that stirred my own thinking about my memories of my own life.
Sep. 19th, 2015 05:07 pm (UTC)
Thank you. :)
Sep. 22nd, 2015 03:34 pm (UTC)
thank you for sharing this.
Sep. 28th, 2015 07:13 pm (UTC)
Thank you for reading.
( 20 comments — Leave a comment )



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