A Precocious Child

A note from 6/29/2010 

I used to think that I’m so different now compared to when I was a kid. Today I realized that the things that HAVE changed since I was younger are age, wisdom, experience, and knowledge. But what HASN’T changed is who I am, my nature, my personality, my nuances.

I sorted through two boxes of stuff from my childhood. Yearbooks, notes from pen pals, grade cards, youth soccer team photos. I found 3 things I’d forgotten all about and as I looked over them, I thought, “Some things never change.”

Number 1
Letter from Planters LifeSavers Company dated June 15, 1992
When I was 10 years old, I wrote a letter to the makers of Bubble Yum bubble gum to bring an important issue to their attention – my pack of gum was mislabeled with the wrong flavor. So, I wrote a letter and I got a coupon (still have that, too).
What I learned about myself: I have always sought truth, fairness and justice.

Number 2
Letter from Focus on the Family dated January 24, 1994
My curious 12-year-old mind led me to ask questions from those who I believed had the answers. I wanted to understand more about Jehovah Witnesses, so I asked the person who I believed at the time was the supreme expert on religion – Dr. James Dobson. After all, I’d been taught that in Sunday school. Here’s an excerpt from the response I received: “In your letter, you asked us for information about Jehovah Witnesses. Unfortunately, we do not have any to give you.” Then they gave me a referral to another organization.
What I learned about myself: I have always been inquisitive and have learned that the “authority” on the issues is not always the best source.

Number 3 (my favorite)
Marvel Comics valentine from 1995
On the front: Fantastic Four’s Thing
On the back: Handwritten note saying “Beth, Your the only one in here I truly like. – Erik”
What I learned about myself: I’m empathetic, honest and quirky. I feel your pain.

Childhood_ValentineIt really is true that some things never change. Actually, there is something very empowering about knowing who you are and staying true to that through your life. I’m just 28 short years in, but I suspect that when I’m 90 I’ll still be fighting for what’s right, asking questions, and offering a shoulder to lean on. That’s just me. 

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