Alaskan Grown

My childhood was not perfect; I see that now as an adult looking back on my life. Even with its imperfections, it was so special and filled with love. There is nothing in the world that I would trade for my childhood experience. The blog you are reading is the story of my childhood. It will be an ongoing collection of short stories about the memories I have from my childhood. I will tell you an honest and deeply personal story; I will do my best to be as accurate as possible when it comes to the words and actions of the people in my life. Welcome to my childhood!

My earliest memory is of the home we lived in when I was two months old and living in Anchorage Alaska.

“Cameron Thomas Denny you’re my bright and shiny penny, and I love you.”

My mother was singing softly to me those words, as she would do the rest of my life. Nestled into her bosom, centered in the safety of a mothers love I become conscious of the connection we shared. It is a connection that has never wavered. The smell of freshly baked banana nut bread embraced every corner of the house. To this day when that smell enters my nostrils a deep and powerful sense of safety and home engulfs my body.

I remember eating hardboiled eggs that day too. A flash of a memory of something that seems absurd for only being two months old, but I remember it. But why do I remember these things? What about these moments made them so profound that they have stuck with me for thirty-one years of life, and after all the drugs too.

The one glimpse into the meaning behind this memory is that it foreshadowed my whole life so far. While my mother nurtured me, sang to me about my value, and made impactful sense memories for me to have years to come, my father inflated his new yellow river raft in the living room. The action of this was of course, not some horrible offense, he was excited about his new toy. He always got new toys. He did love me; he does love me.

And yet, this dynamic continued to play out all through my childhood. My mother gave herself endlessly to me, while my father doubted he knew how to raise me, how to connect with me. He would hold me, and I would cry and cry. He told my mom he thought I hated him. She would reassure him babies do not hate, they only love, but insecurities from his past and relationship with his father got in the way. The behavior he manifested was of course not his fault, not entirely anyway.

Despite this rift and polarized relationship modalities with my parents, they still established a foundation for me that ultimately led me to a profound future through a blessed life. In fact, at some point my father stepped aside and allowed David, my stepdad, to represent “dad” to me in totality. I hadn’t realized until just now writing this what a poignant sacrifice my birth father made for me. David was such a pivotal part of my development into the man I am today. I must call and thank my father for his sacrifice. He deserves to know, I mean I exist because of him.

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