Thursday, June 20, 2013

Charles Warren Hodsdon

Charles Warren Hodsdon (on left); 25 years service in Customs

It has recently come to my attention through the family grapevine that this man, my great-Uncle Warren, went home to the Lord back in May. I was greatly saddened to hear the news; but, I know he is in a happier place now. He holds a special place in my heart along with his first wife, Aunt Nellie, and my Gram (his sister and my father’s mother).

I rarely talk about personal things because I, for the most part, am very private. I also would never want to willingly hurt anyone that I love dearly. But, I am in a place in life where I feel freer to talk about the things that matter to me most. I will keep this as short as possible because I know no one likes a long read. Because of this, please know that there will be many gaps in this story of mine.

Unbeknownst to many, my grandmother indirectly saved my life. And, my Uncle Warren and Aunt Nellie helped saved my sanity. All three were lovely wonderful godly people whom God knew I needed most in a particular point in my life.

If it was not for Gram’s invitation to join her at a Christian youth camp in the summer of 1979 where she was a cook and for my folk’s agreement to let me go as long as my mother went along for the ride, I would not be alive today. Yes, you read that right. I was planning to kill myself because there was no way I was going to step foot into high school (grades 9 – 12) and repeat the pure living hell I went through in junior high (grades 6 – 8). I was in a deep dark place of despair without any kind of hope and I think no one truly knew what was going on inside me except for Gram who saw through many things.

The trip to Maine in the summer of 1979 changed my life. When I heeded God’s prompting and gave my life to the Lord in spite of lingering questions, I immediately was at peace deep within my soul and I then knew that I could not kill myself as God would consider it to be murder (of self). So, I put those plans aside.

I met Uncle Warren and Aunt Nellie at the youth camp (they were heavily involved at the time), they invited me into their home while my Gram and my Mother continue work as a cook in youth camp. Those (camp and at Uncle Warren's place) were the best weeks of my young life. I have many wonderful memories. They showed me unconditional love and the ways of the Lord. They were by no means perfect; but, they knew God and walked with Him to the best of their abilities.

Side note: I returned to Uncle's homestead in 1984 after first year of college. I suffered from extreme depression at that particular time and I knew I had to get away. They helped me return to myself during that summer. They gave me a safe place to just be and to heal. I know many in my family, including my folks, did not understand why I wanted to be there for most of the summer; but, it was what I needed to do and where I needed to be at that time in my life. My uncle and aunt seemed to instinctively know that I needed to be left alone and just shown unconditional love.

I am ever thankful to my great Uncle Warren and Aunt Nellie for putting up with a girl that loved them, to hang around learning new things and helping around the place. And, most of all, tag along fishing with him. He later told me that he enjoyed having someone with him who loved to go fishing whenever he went on those trips.

If only I could fly, I would go to Maine in a heartbeat. But, my fear of flying and the panic attacks have become way too much for me to handle. {I have not flown since June of 1999.) It would take something great to get me to step foot onto a plane once again.

Anyway, I needed to tell my story. I know Uncle Warren is having a grand time in heaven with all the loved ones who have gone before him.

Some people come into our lives and leave footprints on our hearts and we are never ever the same. - Flavia Weedn

~John Taylor
Uncle Warren, I'll see you later.

{note: the first picture above was given to me by my beloved Gram eons ago}.