Carmen the…

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First picture; left to right, me in my second or third grade, clearly uncomfortable:)

Second picture; Chet and I on our wedding day. The malnourishment made me light:)

Third picture; my family as of last week, Chet, Merrill, Alex and Meleah:)

Writing about one self its a bit deceiving; you’re either too biased or too hard on yourself and overall one sided.

I’ve had a few nick-names so its hard to pick just one. Is it Carmen the Dreamer, the Writer, the Fighter, the Captain or the Ice Queen? It’s all of them, I suppose.

Born the first of twelve siblings, my life was both wonderful and hard. My birth wasn’t without its challenges. Shots of Vit. D and Iron for the first year or so, along other health issues somehow gave the doctor the right to pressure my mother into killing me. It wasn’t just my health issues that triggered such a decision but compiled to that it was his deep hatered towards christians. You see, I was a seedling of a very hated group of people in my part of the world at the time and I was not alone. In an atheistic world, being born a Christian was dangerous, and we have the scars to prove it.

A “sensitive soul”, with an over-developed ability or gift of empathy I collected other’s pain in my heart as if my life depended on it. The society’s abuse towards us made sense to me- we were a moral danger to a movement that thrived on egocentricity and cruelty. But our father’s abuse towards us never made sense to me. In times when one must stick with each other in an environment called “home”, meaning “safe”, he became our number one enemy, burning all my ideologies on “safe home” right out of my heart. However, beyond reasons I couldn’t understand and logic I couldn’t explain, except to call it hope, with every rare smile, joke or laughter my father had, a fragile hope seed grew in my heart “maybe he’ll change”. The hope lasted no longer than mere fragments of time until the next wave of darkness took a hold of him. Books, that’s where I found my refuge, not church, society or social interactions. That’s where I could dream freely and imagine the world I wanted to live in. I think I was a bit of a loner, yet with a great deal of charisma.

Being the oldest, I worked constantly skipping on childhood and adolescence all together.

Right after high school, I began working twelve hours shifts, seven days a week at an ice-cream and soda-pop kiosk, very popular at the time. I was very greatful for my $6 a month salary, it was similar to my father’s salary. I was not allowed to go to collage, due to my gender and lack of money, something that made me very bitter at the time.

God to me was just another tyrant figure, unhappy, abusive, not nice at all, yet someone I kept on hearing that somehow “loved me.” I wanted nothing to do with this God but didn’t dare communicate that to my parents. A missionary changed all that. He brought along with him stories of a very powerful and nice God, similar to Jesus in the New Testament (the church loved the mean and angry Old Testament God) and I fell in love for the very first time with God. Willingly, I wanted to have a relationship with this new image of God, not the one in the church. I began a new walk, a happy and light walk with God.

After the 1989 fall of communism revolution in most of the Estern European block, charitable help came into the country in the form of clothes, shoes, and monthly food supplies. “If I ever get rich, I’ll do the same.” A prayer shot up to the heavens from a thankful heart and put in practice soon after.

In 1993 I was rescued by this super handsome and tall young man, Chet, who was part of a missionary team from America. The engagement and wedding was a big source of gossip and wonder. We married on August 15th, in Romania. A very unusual wedding since the bride and groom couldn’t talk to each other:) Leaving Romania and coming to America on October 15th, was one of the most stressful things I lived through. Not because of Chet, my new husband, but everything else: leaving my family, who I no longer could protect, entering a new land with new traditions I din’t understand and no one familiar to communicate with. Halloween was a weird and dark first impression of American holidays, only the small kids dressed in cute costumes brought a smile to my face, all other gore did not. My parents-in-law were a hugeeeeee support during that time.

I had my first born, Merrill, in 1995, followed quickly by my second, Meleah, in 1996 and then our surprise, Alex, in 1993, (I was pregnant with Alex when I flew back to Romania to see Fanu in the hospital, but I did not know I was pregnant). I had a few jobs: babysitting, sells rep at the Gap, preschool teacher, writer, real-estate agent, home design and massage therapist. I’ve never been more fulfilled in my work field, like when I’m writing.

Most of you know that in January of 2014, I fell ill, an illness that almost took my life and I’m still fighting it, getting better each day, with the occasional relapses, which are still far too often than I like to admit.

I’m very happy now, even if in pain most days. Every day I’m greatful to God for allowing me another day on this wonderful planet and among my loved ones. Life is very normal, and calm (I need to keep it calm and stress-free) and mundane but I love it:) Thank you God for my life:)

 

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