Today I just want to share a little bit with you about me. No lessons, no special knowledge. Just get to know your Dad a little.
My mom, Grandma Gail, was named Mildred Gail Lowery. I know she didn’t like her first name, at least for a long time, but I think later in life she may have appreciated it as it held some sort of family meaning. I’m not really sure what the history was there though.
Funny story: In Disney’s The Little Mermaid, the prince is named Eric, and he guesses Ariel’s name as Mildred in the Kiss The Girl song sequence. She does not react well to being called Mildred.
Anyway, my biological father’s name is/was Gary Morgan. I don’t really know much about him other than what my mom told me and I have four memories of him from childhood. My mom and dad (PopPops) married when I was three, and Gary gave up his paternal rights to me when I was about 5. He’s never tried to contact me that I know of (perhaps he can’t?), but since I have a dad already, I haven’t not really felt the need to find him myself.
My dad, to me, is your PopPops. His name is Tommy Lynn Lowery, Jr, and he has been my dad as long as I can remember. Uncle Jason is technically my half-brother. He was born in 1987, a few years after my mom and PopPops got married.
When I was really little, we lived in a few different places, but the ones I remember the most was a condo in Clarkston, Georgia and a rental house on Riderwood Dr. There was a lot of crime around the condo and I remember part of my dad’s new truck was stolen.
Most of my first memories start at the condo, though I do have some earlier memories. I remember learning to ride my bike on a hill in the back yard, and a big rock I could climb on. I also remember shooting water rockets in the street and playing with cap guns.
What I remember most though, was my daycare. Looking back I realize I had the coolest daycare till I started staying in an after school program. During the summer, my daycare went to the lake, we had a sea-doo, we went to Six Flags and White Water Adventure Park. We had a swimming pool AT the daycare, and we went to the movies, skating rink, and putt-putt. And we did this every week all summer long. It was awesome!
I played baseball from the time I was 5 until mid-high school. That was “my sport.” I was a decent player but not nearly as athletic as my peers by the time I reached high school. I also played football in 4th and 8th grade, but stopped after that when I changed schools.
I went to Briarlake Elementary School, which went through 7th grade. I then went to Shamrock High School which was 8th grade to 12th grade at the time. The next year, Shamrock became a middle school, and I was transferred to Lakeside High School for 9th grade. After 9th grade, my parents decided to move to Lilburn, GA (from Decatur, GA) and I went to Parkview High School for 10-12th grades.
School was a little weird for me. I was bored to death most days. I was the kid that never studied for tests and never did homework, but I always learned the material and would often “blow the curve” for other kids. The Curve was the term we used when the teacher would adjust the highest grade on the test to 100 and add the same number of points to all the other kids. So if the highest score was 92, the teacher would add 8 points to
As a result of my refusal to study, I had terrible grades. Usually low Bs and Cs for most of high school. College, which was graded almost entirely by tests, was much easier for me and I had a very high GPA. This is where I learned that the arbitrary metrics we use to judge people against one another are often flawed and that lesson has served me well with my work.
I grew up not knowing “what I wanted to be when I grew up.” Some people, like your mom, always knew what they wanted. Your mom told me she wanted to be a doctor since she was 13. I never had any such goals. My mom wanted me to be a doctor or attorney or whatever, but I just never felt like that was the right calling for me. I’ll tell you more about all that later.
In 8th grade, I started skateboarding. I hung out with the “skater” crowd until I graduated. I was halfway decent, but it was always just a hobby.
During the same time, I started playing guitars and drums, which were the catalyst for my eventually getting a music degree. I’ll tell you more about that later too.
My parents were never terribly well off, but I never knew. Looking back I can see it, but as a kid, I had no idea.
The biggest part of my childhood… my favorite thing… was how Grandma Gail did Christmas. And THAT will definitely be a topic for a future letter. For now my time is up and I have to run, but I can’t wait to tell you more.
I love you sweetheart. You are a diamond shining in a rough world. Muah!
P.S. Another thing about my childhood was that I was ALWAYS reading. I love(d) books and my friends often asked me if there was something wrong if I wasn’t reading. I love seeing that you are turning into a voracious reader yourself and you talk so much about how you enjoy books. That makes me so happy!
P.P.S. What kind of dinosaur has the best vocabulary? Easy. A Thesaurus.
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