One Child’s Story

I was not raised knowing what a choice looked like. The only choice I knew of was “this” or “that” and that was more than a lot of people. When I turned three years of age, my two older sisters, my mother and father and had moved into our grandparents home in Saskatoon. These folks were my father’s parents, who lived in a two bedroom house with an outhouse at the back of the property about 100 feet from the back door of the house. I remember there was no room for me to sleep and ended up sleeping in a bed made for me in the bathtub. My mother was pregnant and we moved there for my mother to have some help from my father’s mother. I became very ill with Pneumonia and ended up in the hospital at the same time my mom was having my baby brother in June 1959. After being in the hospital a couple of days, I contracted the Measles and ended up with a temperature raising to 106 degrees and being put into an oxygen tent so I could breath. My parents came to see me but could not touch me. They had to dress in protective clothing, put their hands into the gloves and touched me while I was in an incubator tent. The hospital had to call in a Catholic priest to administer my last rights because they did not know if I would live or if I would die a young death. I remember one time my parents brought me a present and it was a clown with plastic donuts stacked five high. To this day, I have a beautiful clown collection and it all started back in 1965 when I was only ten years of age I and started with with three drawings. In my later years of life, my friend/brother/neighbour for many years, would go to garage sales throughout Calgary on a weekly basis and purchase unique one-of-a-kind clowns and give them to me whenever we met together. I have focused on each one and think that I was one of those clowns at least one time in my life.

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