© 2011, Mirror Image Edutainment, edit 8/26/2018
“Who am I?” I ask myself.
If you read my last post, you will be familiar with how, upon coming to America, I learned to swim in Germany’s North Sea.
“Schwimm, Schwimm” Mummy cried emphatically.
“But Mummy” I burbled between mousefulls of saltwater “I sink I don’t vant to go to Ame-rika”.
“Stop sinking so much und schwimm” she said “Schwimm, schwimm, schwimm”.
It did not really happen zat way, but my twisted sense of humor thinks it’s funny.
My father, George James Mayer, born in 1896. was the quintessential 20th century American, among a handful of Directors of Education selected to represent General George Marshall’s Marshall Plan that kept Europe from falling to the Communists at the close of World War Two, May, 1945. In his mature career years, my father developed, implemented, and supervised programs that fostered language, culture, and understanding between Allied forces, their families, and the citizens of the countries in which they were serving.
That meant defeated Nazi Germany. Not a pail not a chair not a broom left intact.
The goal was to keep the world free of tyrants and dictators, safe for Democracy. George Mayer’s main contribution to that goal may have been his Berlin war bride, Christina H.H. Mayer, my mother, named after three queens, raised in a granite castle on a lake patrolled by white swans.
For twenty years my mother played the role of newlywed, enjoying herself sunning on her private front yard beaches in Morocco, Tunisia, and Lybia with a Fatima to take care of the nasty deed of changing diapers. One of the benefits of my father’s position was unlimited world travel at the cost of the tax. When I was a child, George and his twenty-three year younger war bride, Christina, Mummy, dragged me across four continents, changing A.P.O. address every year, as I questioned, never yet having been on the North American continent, Is this what it is to be American? It did not even occur to me to add the ‘an’ American. To my knowledge, I had no rights.
I knew my father had adopted my mother. She was the same age as his three grown daughters from a previous marriage, a second, but what she was other than damaged goods, I never knew. As a child, I had no idea I was a Germerican, ein Deutschikaner. Other than Miss Dyer, no one ever took the time to tell me. No one ever asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up. So I never thought about it. I just kept building Lego houses. I wanted to serve people by designing living spaces, houses, planes, cars, but no one asked, so I did as Dad told me “Don’t rock the boat, Alan”.
On both sides of the Atlantic, I spent a few years unnecessarily in foster homes. A family friend once said “There was no room for Alan in the Mayer family”. The first foster home I was left at, age seven, while Mummy took off to Italy with her family, happened to be the summer of my life. My Aunt Eva lived in a large villa on acres of land, across the street from a farm. First time in my life I was able to play with children my age (outside of school), two sisters and a brother. I got to collect chicken eggs, feed the pigs, milk the cows by hand and machine, and I went on a hayride into the fileds.
For the next twenty years, until the passing of my aunt, I had a room, the last one in the garden level looking over the hills, in the country outside Bonn, in a large house with only two bathrooms.
Without even meeting “foster parents”, without having even stepped into their house, all future “foster” homes were approved by Mummy. Dad was whipped. April or November it made no difference, I was enrolled and withdrawn from ten schools on three continents before I graduated from high school. Along the way, I got lost in the cracks.
I was violated in homes number two, three, and four. While subconsciously “trying” to function in these homes, between crying myself to sleep every night wishing I was dead, with no God to consult, no relationship to Jesus or any other man besides my 19th Century father, I strove to understand what it was (an perhaps still is) about me that made others find it so impossible to live with me. At fifteen, I ran away from a dreadful experience in Europe’s Ruhr Valley, post war Essen, the armpit of Europe. I hopped a train and ran away to ‘my bedroom in the country’. I hammered a board to a level tree stump, and called it a table, that seventh summer. I fashioned left over linoleum squares into sandals for everyone in the household.
Nine years later I show up in February. She sent me to visit die Ausgewanderten Acht — The Eight Immigrants in Eight European capitals.
As an adult, I finally learned I asked too many questions of Mummy, but I am a slow learner. To this day, I have not stopped questioning. I have paid dearly for this early freedom with my physical, emotional and mental health. I am a survivor, the accumulated consciousness of all my ancestors on both sides of the fence, diagnosed all sorts of labels. The entire world is crazy, or we would not have signed up for this repetitious voyage of sickness, death, and rebirth.
I choose to recognize what seems like truth, to me. My truth then, my truth now, I seek to fine tune my understanding of Divine Cause.
# # #
After following much pain, several disturbing moves, all my questioning finally led to answers when in 1980 I asked the right people. I made inquiries about re-birthing, and followed through. Re-birthing is a process of re-experiencing birth in a loving way through gentle touch, often in water, with music, without the cold green tile walls and steel instruments, without the slap on the rear. After my first session, my first re-birther gave me a list of questions to ask my mother about my birth.
Mummy refused to talk. No surprise there. I went to my father, and he told me more than I needed to know. I finally understood why I hated, yes, I hated wearing neckties, and as a young man I was horny. My questions were answered. I was conceived on Christmas Eve. I was wanted, my father told me “To complete the family unit” but that did not hide the fact Mummy, unless I was dragged along on one of her shopping sprees to approve of her dress purchases, Mummy never seemed happy with me around, or in her belly.
At seven and a half months pregnant with me, she was first to climb to the top of the Acropolis in Athens. Six weeks later I was born, with an erection and the umbilical cold wrapped around me neck. I was never breast fed. Aisha, my fatima, changed every diaper for nine months. In my father’s color home movies, Mummy picks me up by one arm, as if I was a rag doll. Then she smooches and smothers me in kisses until I cringe — my first of many appearances on camera begins with a cringe. Dad told me more. I worked through it, though not particularly successfully.
# # #
This is the story how I came to live in this country, an American citizen born in Casablanca, Morocco, raised in Europe. My mother is an heiress without an heir. She has always taken her birthright for granted, enjoying the best of the old world, the Vaterland, and taking in the conveniences of the new. She hated garbage disposals after a couple of her silver spoons were retrieved severely scratched. Anyone who was invited into her domain was allowed to share her wealth, the wealth provided by my father, George James Mayer, the wealth of Dad’s Uncle Sam. I was privileged to be allowed to live in Mummy’s love-ly villas, apartments, and houses — as long as she could stand me.
I was her mirror and she did not like what she saw.
Sister practiced on parents five and a half years before I arrived, learning to control, dominate, and manipulate. She grabbed all she could, including my toys. I was too flimsy to fight her. I grew up watching Dad’s fourth daughter wrap both my parents around her little fingers. She was born ahead of me, she must know how it is done.
On February 22, 1966, my father’s seventieth birthday, the Mayer ‘family’ flew west over the Atlantic in a Pam Am 707 jet. The stewardess invited me into the cockpit. The captain gave me a model jet. We flew around the Statue of Liberty twice, before landing at the newly renamed JFK International Airport. Three years earlier, after six days at sea on the Geiger, at six-thirty in the morning, I had the privilege of seeing Miss Liberty as we entered New York harbor. We docked, and took a six week coast to coast Tour I was lucky to have been included in.
Praise Alla, praise God, praise Roses and Violets.
Fresh off the plane, we took a taxi to Long Island Sound, where my father had rented an efficiency apartment on a quiet tree-lined green street with old brick buildings. While waiting for Dad’s Pontiac, on separate transport, we took in the sights of New York. I remember my mother buying a set of Chinese inspired dishes, monks, cranes, and boats on a river (Made in the U.S.A. back then). We took turns dragging the boxes with us on the subway. I had never been on a subway. I had never been in a Taxi cab, and certainly never a yellow Checker cab with a pop down seat just my size. European cabs are black, gray, or white. Children welcome only if they are silent and invisible.
I remember our trip to the top of the Empire State building, at the time, the tallest building in the world. When the Pontiac arrived, I was allowed to accompany my father to the dock to claim it, along with Mummy, and Dad’s favorite daughter, Princess Pyewaket, as he called her. Sad. Sis was named after only two queens.
We headed north to Boston, and Concord, then west to Philadelphia, where we spent a couple of days learning about American history. From there, Sia and I tagged along in the back seat, separated by my maternal grandfather’s black leather suitcase nudged in between the back half of the bucket seats, resting on the console and the rear bench. Dad drove an average of six hours a day. Along the way, we stopped to spend an afternoon with friends in Toronto and Chicago. Both families lived in large, modern homes with beautiful yards. We toured Saint Louis in three minutes, took another two minutes to marvel at the Gateway Arch, which had just been unveiled.
My job was to serve as lookout for the orange and turquoise roofs of the many Howard Johnson Inns along Route 66. Dad liked the color scheme, Mom liked the price, and Sis and I liked the magic fingers that wiggled and massaged the mattress, ten minutes for a quarter. Seventy-five cents later, it was exhausting.
We passed the old relatives in Kansas and Nebraska, pulled into Denver around ten at night, and hitched up at the Hitching Post Motel on Colfax. Second time that year, I entered the fifth grade at a new school. The innkeepers’ children, recent arrivals from England, had a son and daughter my age, who accompanied me to the school bus, and looked out for my best interest, Paul and Lorna.
Fresh off the boat from England, the Kerswills passed Mummy’s approval.
In beautiful suburban Aurora, my father bought a red brick trilevel home with a cathedral ceiling, a four hundred square foot veranda, and a mountain view — standing on tiptoe at the master bedroom window. Two bathrooms for a family who needed three. I was withdrawn from Paul and Lorna, re-entered in the fifth grade again, this time for three weeks until school let out for summer.
That first summer I asked Mummy if she would give me some money to buy a comic book. Even then, my fifty cent allowance did not cover my needs. “Go earn your own money” she said, and I did. I started a lawn care business, and before New Years’ 1967, I entered the News and Information business, when I took up a morning Rocky Mountain News paper route. Over the next four years I earned over two thousand dollars from my paper route and lawn care business, caring for three neighbors’ yards. Much of it I earned in tips
“the Mayer boy, always hits the porch”.
I spent about twenty percent of my earnings on clothing, a cool watch, skis, and ski tickets, but in the back of my head I could not help but hear Mummy, the unacknowledged P.T.S.D. survivor of World War II — “SAVE SAVE SAVE”. I was twenty-five before I heard of the Law of Tithing. I hope my father did his share of it, if not monetary, he certainly did his share of tithing his time for good cause. I believe my father tithed in secret. Everything else went into Mummy’s Retirement Account. No insurance, just a good healthy three-quarters of a million dollars, which have since been confiscated.
To learn savings tips from Mummy, (and for a good laugh) check out post: My Mother’s Golden Locks.
There is one life.
This life is God.
This life is perfect.
This life is my life now.
I claim perfect thought, perfect word, perfect action.
I give thanks.
And so be it.