Memoirs 3 - Life after the 2x2 Work
My Folks Confusion
My folks didn't know what to do. I stayed at their place. I was emotionally confused. My physical nervous system was overstressed. I didn't know how to react to things after years of being told to "be nice" and "fit in". I didn't have any emotional wisdom or maturity to know how to express my hurt feelings in a productive way.
I was in the work for 1.5 years before becoming so sick from stress that I left.
I'm really thankful that I got sick. I'm glad my mother recognized that I was at the beginning of a nervous breakdown. For those of you that don't know what this sickness is, I'll describe a little.
A nervous breakdown is similar to ripping a muscle. Imaging you lift a weight in your one arm. Same repetition each day. Only you don't get to sleep, so the muscle never heals. And then you keep increasing the weight but force yourself to lift it. You reach a point where the muscle tears because it cannot heal and has no way to rebuild to increase strength.
I had two visitors when I was sick: Craig Jacobsen (who came to ask me for money) and his younger brother Curtis Jacobsen. That's it. That was no credit to Craig Jacobsen. Curtis Jacobsen probably came over for browny points to get into the work. Who knows? I don't trust any of the workers, except that I know they do the work of Satan and destroy God's work.
Mat 25:41 Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels:
Nervous breakdowns happen when you are living a lie. You say one thing, but you're doing another. You say you're happy, but you're not. So you start thinking. But there's too much to think about. With thinking, we do it night and day whether we want to (mostly) or not. Every person has to go through and reconcile what's going on around them with what they believe. Either they change what they believe to justify themselves or they change what they do.
Pro 21:2 Every way of a man is right in his own eyes: but the LORD pondereth the hearts.
So, here's some details of how a partial nervous breakdown physically feels. So basically before it happens you're just confused as ever, no worse. It's the confusion that is making you physically sick. And when I say confusion, it just means an overload of thoughts that you don't have enough time or energy to sort through yet. So I'm talking to Curtis Jacobsen, the only person that came to visit me when I was sick (except Craig Jacobsen who came to ask for some money back, a $20 bill that Vic Green gave to me and wanted back). God bless Craig Jacobsen and Vic Green for that. It helps show how righteous they really are. Anyways, I was talking with Kurtis and I feel what's like this blowtorch on the back of my neck. Only my neck isn't hot and there's no blowtorch behind me. And it half feels like someone is tearing the skin off the back of my neck, but not on the surface, it's really deep like the spinal column. And so I tell my mother I'm not feeling good. And she says "You need to go lie down and not think". She says, "If you start thinking, tell yourself to stop and just think about nothing". Well, that was hard, I was a thinker all my life and still am. But I did that and the burning stopped. Now I was fortunate. Thank God my mother was there.
From what I remember, mother has been through a full nervous breakdown. I remember when she was sitting in the lazyboy and we'ld come kiss her eye-lids and say "I love you mommy". And she would just cry because she couldn't do anything. In fact this is about the first time I've really talked about this and I really appreciate someone bringing this up. So now I was saved from a full nervous breakdown where it (the feeling of a torch on the back of your neck) goes completely up the back of your neck, over the top of your head all the way to your forehead.
My father needed a cabinet built in the garage, so I built a functional cabinet with shelves. I discovered that working with my hands was healing and made me feel better. At the time, I didn't know why. I didn't know what was bothering me nor what to really do about it to get better. I was confused and looking for answers.
I started asking my father questions. He didn't know the answers and seemed distressed at the questions. Later he told me that both he and mother were scared and didn't know how to help me.
Getting a Job - OSPIRG
I worked for OSPIRG (Oregon State Public Interest Group) for a while and had a studio downtown in Portland. It was a hard job, going door to door (canvassing - it is called) educating people about clean drinking water and laws. It was an emotionally demanding job and just the opposite of what I needed after trying to recover from "the work".
Getting my Own Place
My folks wanted me to move out. So I got a place in downtown Portland in a low-income housing area. I had a high-school education. My folks didn't want me around. I didn't know how to cook. I hardly knew how to wash my clothes. All those things had been done for me by people in the field before. Not that I wasn't willing to learn, I just hadn't been taught. I started learning about food portions and eating balanced meals. I had never lived on my own before. I had no one close by to ask questions and get dependable answers from someone I could trust. I felt very alone. All the attention that I had as a worker was gone. I was just a "saint" now. Just one of the friends. I had come down from the "worker high". I began to realize that people only idolized and put me on a pedestal because I was a "worker" and a special worker because I had been so young.
I moved to Montana with my sister. I lived in a house with several other of the "friends", which included at one time or another: Dellas Waldo, Dallas Brown, Stan Parsons, Stan Parsons younger brother, Russ ? and Dave Brown.
The "friends" over there were different. Different customs and different doctrines. One of the Bible studies elder's wives started a food fight (spaghetti and meatballs, hello?) at my birthday celebration. Everett Swanson was in that field. A lot of the younger people there had no clue as to what the Bible said on things. I used to ask them questions that I knew they had been taught otherwise on. When they would come up with answers, I would ask them where that was in the Bible. They couldn't find anything. Asking questions is a great way to wake up 2x2s. They think they know a lot and that they're right but they usually don't know beans and quickly contradict themselves.
While I was in Montana, a few of the friends were kicked out for believing that Jesus is God. That's about all I remember about that issue.
I moved to central Oregon on way to go to college at Mt. Hood Community college. Bob Neary needed some help on his farm in central Oregon, so I agreed to help. I spent all the money I had on gas to get there.
I worked outdoors in central Oregon for a while. I built fence, tended to bighorn sheep and llamas. I worked for Bob and Yvonne Neary. I didn't like the way Bob Neary used people and some things that were going on and so I continued to move the rest of the way to Gresham where I grew up. I had purchased a diesel VW rabbit from Bob Neary.
I stayed with my folks for a while. While taking off the non-working air-conditioner, I dropped a nut which happened to fall into the timing-chain. That was a mistake. I didn't see where it went. When I started the engine, the timing belt slipped and destroyed the valves. The engine was basically toast then.
From Central Oregon to Gresham
I rented a room from Ralph Siedelman. That was a mistake. One time he walked into the bathroom when I had the door closed and blocked me from exiting. I asked him to move aside so I could get out and he refused. He just stood there. I called to a room mate, Justin Wicks. He hollered up "I don't want any", but came up anyway. Ralph finally stepped aside. He was probably the weirdest 2x2 I've ever met.
On a humorous note, Ralph had irritable bowel syndrome. Since he ate so much ice-cream, he would become horribly constipated. I wanted to help, so I bought some aloe laxative. He took the drink with a big bowl of ice-cream. I told him that the ice-cream would negate the affect of the laxative. He didn't care. So next time I increased the dose to counteract the ice-cream. Little did I know that this time he didn't eat his ice-cream with it. Do I need to explain the results. I could hardly keep from laughing every time he had to use the restroom. He never would take anymore! I hope he finally figured out how damaging ice-cream is.
I got a job at Custom Dental Prosthetics delivering teeth to dentists. I enjoyed this work and was good once I learned the routes and the roads.
I moved out of Ralph Siedelman's place. Insert note about Jean Larson sister worker here
I had no place to stay. I couldn't find a place to stay either and my folks said I couldn't stay with them. They said I needed to learn how to live on my own. Never mind that they only taught me maybe a dozen things in life, like how to empty the garbage or how to bake angel food cake.
So I lived in the back of my pickup and got a job delivering pizzas at Dominos. At night I would park in a vacant lot and pull up a plastic tarp over some bent plastic pipe stuck in the pickup bed stake pockets.
I borrowed money on a credit card to get a little 4 x 8 utility trailer. I built plywood sides on it and hauled it around behind my pickup. It was 4 feet tall. I put a bed and shower in it. I parked out past Sandy in a Forest Service road. In the morning, I would go down to the stream and get water. I had a propane burner that I would heat water in and boil a couple eggs. I would then take out the eggs and pour the hot water from the pan and some cold water from a stream into a milk jug. I ran a little clear tube from the milk jug to my wash cloth. That's how I showered. I kept working for Dominos pizza.
It hurt me horribly that my parents didn't care. That verse came to mind
Luk 20:9 Then began he to speak to the people this parable; A certain man planted a vineyard, and let it forth to husbandmen, and went into a far country for a long time. Luk 20:10 And at the season he sent a servant to the husbandmen, that they should give him of the fruit of the vineyard: but the husbandmen beat him, and sent him away empty.
I realized that there was just no fruit here to be had. But I didn't know what else to believe in. So I kept on.
I realized that I couldn't keep living this way. I wanted to get away and have a decent job. I prayed to God that he would help me.
I read in Proverbs where it says
Pro 22:29 Seest thou a man diligent in his business? he shall stand before kings; he shall not stand before mean men.I prayed to God that He would keep his word. This was probably the first time that I had ever asked God to do something "natural" for me.
I was good at my job at Dominos and worked hard. I found an add in the paper for truck driving. I called them up and they said to come down and fill out an application.
I lived out of my little trailer for 2-3 weeks and passed my driving test easily. They thought it was really interesting that I had to live out of that little trailer. I lived out of that little 4 foot wide by 8 foot long by 4 foot tall trailer in their parking lot throughout their training program.
Shortly I was out on the road, all by myself. Just after I graduated from their truck driving school, the state officials shut it down, since they were not an approved school. But I already had my license, so it didn't matter to the state. Driving that huge semi-truck alone for the first time was a huge experience for me. There was no one by my side and nobody to tell me what to do in case something happened. That was really scary at first. But I got used to it. I drove for May Trucking through the 11 Western states for one full year. I payed off almost my full pickup loan and a lot of my bills.
I got a job doing technical audio work for Dick Brouse. I didn't have enough money to rent a place . I lived out of the back of my truck again but this time I had a canopy. Dick and Jenny Brouse invited me to stay at their place. I stayed their for a while. They were much nicer than any 2x2 folks I had ever met. They were different too. They didn't always go to gospel meetings and I remember from being in their field as a worker that that frustrated the workers.
Truck Driving for JB Hunt
Later, I lived in Dallas Texas where I drove for JB Hunt and drove the 48 contiguous states. Then I drove for Schneider National in the lower 48, Canada and down by the Mexico border. I went to gopels meetings in almost every state in the US. I saw a lot of different things and heard many stories. When you travel, the 2x2s will tell you things that they wouldn't tell anyone else.
One man who owned a convention grounds (in Ark I think it was) told me how the workers approached him and asked him if he would like a bigger barn. He said that he didn't have the money. They said they would pay for it. And so he got a bigger barn for the convention. I could tell he was very proud of that.
While I drove for Schneider National, my grandmother Mabel Beck died. Then Grandpa Jim started going downhill in his health. Mother took care of Jim and moved down to AZ for many weeks. Shortly afterwards my grandpa Jim Beck died. [part about woman offering to "console" Jim by having sex with him goes here][Part about woman worker afraid of overseer here]Jim Beck left a great sum of money (made in stock market) to my mother. Mother would never read the will to either Pam or I. From what I remember, father wasn't even allowed to see the will. It was kept secret. Her brother Russ Beck, threatened to sue and to send the police after her. Mother was very disappointed because she was hoping Russ would profess.
I got a safe driving award from Schneider and was selected to open up a Truck Driving school in Dallas Texas. I worked there for 6 months and then moved up to Portland, OR because of allergies to plants prevalent around the Dallas, TX area.
Kelvin Naef. Refused to take him out to lunch. Told me not to speak on certain verses in the Bible because their were people living in adultery in the Sunday AM Meeting place. Elder didn't even know what adultery was. Incident of elder not knowing what adultery was goes here, convention grounds, changing meetings. elder wouldn't allow me in meeting because workers didn't want it
I went to a different Sunday AM Meeting about 1 hour drive away.
I move to Portland because of allergies in Texas and lived in an apartment complex. I studied the Linux operating system with horrible book system that has examples that did not work.
Went to Alaska on vacation trip with my father.
I got a job with Stream International.
I worked for Stream International INC for two years.
It was around this time that my grandfather Marion Lewis passed away.
Credit Card Fraud
I don't remember exactly which year, but my sister commits credit card fraud. She uses my information and social security number to get a credit card in my name and has the statements sent to her address. She is working for Macey's (or it may have been before Macey's bought out this company). She initially apologizes and then later she denies that she got the card.
Roy and Barbara Wright
Rented room from Roy and Barbara Wright's place. Roy was sick with cancer. Helped Roy get on diet to make him well. He started doing better. After YEARS of taking heart medication for high blood pressure and after 8-9 days on new diet he was able to quit taking his heart medication.
Roy goes off diet, takes radiation treatment and dies quickly of cancer (within weeks).
Lynda Brist and Lisa Brunette in Gresham/East Portland field. I take man in wheelchair to meetings. Hurts my back so I quit doing it.
Phu Nguyen calls me and tells me that his wife has separated, he is sick and needs someone to live at his place to at least be some company to him. I encouraged him to talk to the workers to get some help, and tell him I will think about it.
Linda Brist requests I give her support money in cashier's checks.
Lisa Brunette appears to beginning nervous breakdown. I have great sympathy for her.
Brad Lewis - Home|
Letter of Apology
When I Professed
I believed as 2x2
My 2x2 Baptism
Why I Left
Mistakes I Made
Girls and Dating
How I Got Out
Memoirs 1 B&R
Memoirs 2 Offering
Memoirs 3 - After Work
Cannot Go Back
|To open their eyes, and to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan unto God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins, and inheritance among them which are sanctified by faith that is in me. - Jesus Christ speaking to Saul, see Act 26:18, see Salvation through Jesus Christ.|