"I want, I want, I want ... but that's crazy"

Thursday, August 14, 2008

A little history

How about a little fun background info on me?

I was born the 14th - and last - child of my father, to his sixth wife, Liz. (The only child of that particular pairing.) I was her second child. The first was from her first husband. My father was her second husband. (My father was 31 when I was born. Yes, that's right. Six wives and divorces, and 14 children by the time he was 31.) Her first child is my older half-sister, DJ. (Keeping up so far?) Liz did not want children, particularly girls, so when they divorced, and my father went on immediately to wife number 7, he brought us girls along. (The previous 13 children of his were with his previous wives and girlfriends who bore them.) My father's seventh wife adopted me, and both my father and adoptive mother (hereafter known as MY MOTHER - she's Nana to my babies) adopted DJ.

(Curiously, my birth mother went on to marry a third husband - and have two more children, including the boy she wanted. So that makes me one of 16 total.)

My father and my mother stayed married for five years - a record for him at the time. When they divorced, my mother got custody of both of us girls. I saw little of my father during my childhood, but there were a few notable summer visits. Meanwhile, my father married his eighth wife and remained married to her for ten years. They were two of a kind - meaning, lax in keeping to the stricter confines of the marriage contract. (The eighth wife, btw, had been our neighbor from across the street and my mother's best friend during the marriage. She encouraged my mother to go to church with us girls every Sunday, so that she could stay home and sleep with my father. Her husband at the time sat blissfully unaware at home.) He married a ninth wife, whom I met once. I haven't a clue as to what her name is. They divorced - DUH! - then he married a tenth wife. You might wonder at this point what women are stupid enough to marry this man, knowing full well that he had all these ex-wives and children (when he found out my birth mother was pregnant with me, he got a vasectomy. I barely slipped in under the wire, so to speak.). I've wondered the same thing myself. So anyway, that one lasted a few years until my father died of cancer - or karma. He was about 51 or 52 at that time, I think.

My mother met my father when she was just out of high school and working in a little stationery shop in town. He was passing through town working on the railroad and charmed her as he had so many women before. He told her of his wife and children, and she was hesitant. But when he said he was getting a divorce, and that he wanted her to meet his children, she relented. (She loved children and at that young age already knew that she would never be able to have any of her own because of a childhood illness). Anyway, she says of the first visit: "I walked into your room, and you were sitting there in your crib. You looked up at me with those big blue eyes and you had those blonde curls and you just smiled at me. I knew at that moment that I had to have you. It didn't matter who your father was - I would have married him to get you."

Anyway, my mom is awesome - obviously. She raised me on her own. Didn't get remarried until I was in college. She questions that decision fairly often - the not-staying-single one, that is.

So, that's enough for now. I'll throw in some more later. Trust me. I've barely begun to scratch the surface. Already, you can see why I'm a little ..... well .... me.


Designing Hilary said...

Have you thought of writing a book?

The background you give us in this post doesn't quite mesh with your statement of being an extraordinarily dull person that you wrote in your bio! ;D

Sassy Mama Bear said...

Wow, what a history your father created in his 52 years on earth, I agree I bet there is a book in there.
Thankfully for you, you have a mother that loved you.