Tuesday, February 05, 2008

When Your Family Has Been Blended (Smashed, Patched, Rent, Overhauled, Shredded, Renewed, Sacked) And Still Rises Like a Phoenix

Still in my intermittent procrastination mode -- because it takes me approximately an hour to translate one gospel verse from Greek into English and, as has already been noted, a gannet can only stand so much ~

I spent a little time today working on the "autobiographical questionnaire" that I have to complete for my psych eval for ministry.

Like so many things in my life these days, the questionnaire is designed for people just a bit younger than I am. For instance, it asks multi-part questions about childhood, high school, and college, and then says: Summarize the rest of your life.


But what really stumped me was the first page, on which I was supposed to list the members of my family of origin. I've been debating for awhile just what the term "family of origin" means in my case. But then, as I worked back and forth through the many questions that followed, I realized that, if my own children can't figure it out, no one reading the questionnaire would have a fighting chance. I should just list EVERYONE and note the deceased, the steps, and the half. I can't, you know, pretend to have emerged from a typical nuclear family, because my conversation is sprinkled with phrases likes "my second stepmother" or "the stepbrother I only met right before his mother died."

Father, Mother(D), Me, Brother, Brother (D), Stepmother (D), Stepsister, Stepbrother, Stepbrother, Stepbrother, Stepmother (Div), Stepsister, Stepsister, Half-brother, Stepmother (D), Stepbrother.

I definitely have phoenix stories to tell.


Wayne Stratz said...

hmmm..wonder what they would think if you just wrote down the name of this post???

Presbyterian Gal said...

Bonus points for rising like a phoenix. And not mortgage rates.

My family only has two of us left now. Be nice to have some more. Though glad to have missed the drama of childhood divorce.

Quotidian Grace said...

Whoa, that's amazing. But these days, its probably a lot more common, too.

Kathryn J said...

All of them have played a part, some large and some small, in the wonderful person that you are today - even the ones you would gladly have skipped knowing. You forgot to mention your grandmother and given that she lived next door definitely qualifies as part of the origin.