Thursday, March 8, 2012

Confession is Good For the Soul

Don't ask me why this particular story should come to mind 'cause I ain't telling ya'! But I will tell you that the reason has nothing to do with me in a personal sense.

I was a cute child, if I do say so myself. The youngest of four, I enjoyed the perk of having an entire family at my service, but not everything about being the baby of the family was perfect. No matter what milestones I achieved, someone had always gotten there first and could do it better than me. I craved distinction of my own. Certain family members may say that I succeeded in being distinct beyond my wildest dreams. (I was famous amongst my long-suffering, Type-A sister's classmates for being a nudist)

Even in the course of childhood diseases I remained simply one of the pack. Chicken pox found us all, we all got colds, and we all got the flu. Finally, however, there came to me a disease that was solely my own. NO ONE ELSE IN MY FAMILY HAD IT OR HAD EVER HAD IT. At last, I was special.

The only problem was that I had to stay home the whole time I was sick. It was highly contagious and all the appropriate precautions were taken. But the disease ran its course and the day came I was nearly through. Just at that time there was a day camp overnighter planned with our church. I really wanted to go and I'm sure (in retrospect) that the prospect of seeing my rear end disappear into the distance was somewhat attractive to my mom by that point.I'd been on medication for a very long time, was almost well, and my mom judged that I was no longer contagious. I could go.



I finally have something special about me and I'm not allowed to tell anyone? That just didn't seem fair, but it was only under that condition that I'd get to go, so I reluctantly agreed.

The day came and we left on our overnighter to somewhere, I don't remember where. We must have been staying in one of the school gyms or something, because I do remember a large room full of kids layed out in sleeping bags. I was with my beloved counselor, someone who seemed to me at the time to be a majestically older woman. The atmosphere of the gym was one of camaraderie and fellowship. I desired to open my heart to this girl who meant so much to me. Surely it was OK to tell her my deepest secrets. My mom probably meant not to tell just anybody....

I leaned close to her, gazed up into her face confidingly and whispered my confession.

"I have....impetigo."

I leaned back onto my sleeping bag, satisfied with the import of my news.

I'm not sure what happened on the adult end of things, but I didn't get sent straight home. I know Noni was sure mad at me (Mom told you not to tell anyone!!!!!!). Poor girl was desperately trying to be the most sophisticated 6th grader ever and now her little sister was not only a famous nudist, but one with a plague as well. I'm sure I gave my young counselor a thrill, too.

I still chuckle every time I think about it---ah, the trusting innocence of childhood where it never enters your mind that you might be an object of extreme revulsion to those around you.

1 comment:

  1. It's a good thing you weren't any older, or you would surely have picked up on how ahem SECLUDED (read that excluded and reviled) you were for a while. :D

    ~ Your sophisticated sister