Friday, September 18, 2009

Halfway Down the Stairs Friday Five

Jan from Rev Gals shares a unique Friday Five today.

Halfway down the stairs
Is a stair
Where I sit.
There isn't any
Other stair
Quite like

I'm not at the bottom,
I'm not at the top;
So this is the stair
I always

Halfway up the stairs
Isn't up,
And isn't down.
it isn't in the nursery,
it isn't in the town.

And all sorts of funny thoughts
Run round my head:
"It isn't really
It's somewhere else

— A. A. Milne
“Halfway Down,”
When We Were Very Young

Thinking of your childhood as a stairway, when did you feel (and how did you feel then)?
This is a difficult one, but I'll make a brief attempt at it.

1. at the bottom?

The first of many times feeling "at the bottom" was in Kindergarten. I did not realize, being mostly loved and sheltered at home, that I had some physical difficulties that most other children did not have. So the nearly blind and very clumsy and pigeon-toed me was completely unprepared for the cruelty I encountered in my first classroom and playground. The most "bottom" thing about this was that I knew quite clearly that my teacher, whose name and voice I recall very clearly, did not like me and had no clue what to do with me.

2. at the top?

The most uplifting times for me that same year were in church. I loved everything about it. My teacher, Mrs. Newbill, loved me and saw that I was longing to learn about God. I recall her voice as well, and also her face. That lets me know she got close enough to me for me to see her, which would have been quite close in those days. I loved my pastor, Brother Polk, our classically trained pianist, Paul Zizanis, my friends, the choir...well, you get the idea! No wonder I love the Church. Other "up" times were on camping trips (think Giant Sequoias, Redwoods, waterfalls, and mountains). Camping trips were the times my family acted most like a normal family.

3. halfway?
Just out of high school, feeling half-adult, half-child, feeling miserable about my disintegrated family, but excited to be out of school for a while, feeling freedom coming, feeling frightened. A very tumultuous time...that half way place is an odd one. Maybe I shouldn't have used this one since it wasn't exactly "childhood."

4. At this point in your life, where would you place yourself on your own stairway?

Always climbing it...always seeking to go higher.

5. Identify a place for you that "isn't really anywhere" but "somewhere else instead."

This year. Right now. Not elaborating on that one today.


Mavis said...

Thank you! That warmth of church is heartening. Hope it reaches the 'somewhere else' of today

Barbara B. said...

"always seeking to go higher" -- that's a good thing!

Rev SS said...

May God help the church right now become the warm loving place for you that that childhood church was!