Choosing Responsibility Early

What I express in the following poem started with the first self-awareness.
The sense of responsibility was very strong in me. I feel I was born with it. When I fully knew I could not get out of my circumstances I accepted all as God’s will. I was a good child . My problems became judgemental. I felt I knew what was right. From my limited reasoning there was only right or wrong, truth or falsehood. Understanding and accepting human difference did not come easily. When I knew what was right, I felt offended by anyone who did not agree. I took it personally. Because of my all-important religious beliefs I became very self-righteous. My inner wish to go to a heaven-world remained and I would have committed suicide to escape my unhappy life. But that I knew would only put me into hell.
When I was about 7 years old I was standing on our balcony upstairs and saw bombs falling out of the sky. I did not know what it meant but never forgot the vision. I never talked about it, only remembered. Four years later the bombs rained down on Koenigsberg in 1943. Mother took me there 2 days after it happened and we walked through the bombed out sections knowing people could be buried under the rubble.

To let you know that I grew into greater understanding here is my poem.
But I will soon return and continue with my story.

Being Different Is Our Gift

Many people have my birthday. Many people might have my name.
But I am who I am, we are not the same.
I needed to grow like a young tree.
I felt, I was right. I had to be me.

I wanted someone to understand. I prayed and longed for the promised land.
Could I find a friend who would give me a hand?
I’m convinced I am different. I am convinced nobody knows how I feel.
I am lonely and hurt. I’m so down as in prayer I kneel.

Then I start learning, slowly but true, I am more alike than different from you.
I begin to care, are willing to share, knowing you have feelings too.
What is uniquely myself, this I can share; what I feel, my insights, my care.
My difference I show because now I know:
It’s my gift and has made me aware.

Tela La Mer
Kelowna, June 24, 2012

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