Once upon a time there was a man and a woman who flirted through windows facing each other. They dated, they had sex, they got married, they had a child, in that order. The child would be born at Bremerton Naval Hospital in Bremerton, Washington. This new small family lived there for a couple of years around the young woman's family until the military said it was time for the man to move to Pensacola, Florida. The little boy would go on to start kindergarten here at the age of 4. The child was smaller than other kids his age, not to mention younger than other kids in his class. This would lead to special treatment by teachers, such as him being carried in from recess on the teachers hip. The young boy started getting into some trouble. The school started claiming he was too immature and needed to wait till the next school year to start when he was actually five. The mother was outraged and argued with the school, knowing that her child was more than mature enough and was in fact a very brilliant little boy. The mother refused to believe that her child, who taught himself multiplication at 4 years old, should be held back a year. After much debate, the young boy would end up becoming the first kindergartener to be tested for "the gifted program" in the state of Florida.
When the mother returned to the school with child and IQ test results that were near genius levels, the school had to make accommodations. The boy was then placed in a special class with other children like him. He was then challenged by the material and thus was no longer bored and causing mischief. The school eventually offered to skip the boy ahead a grade because of his outstanding performance. The parents, fearful of him being ostracized by his peers for being too young and small as it was, decided it was not in his best interest. The offer would be repeated and declined for years to come. Another offer was made, one that would have him spend half his day in the next grade up's classroom, and the other half in his correct grade's classroom. This was acceptable to the parents and the child would spend the next 2 years of his schooling in such a predicament.
During his 3rd grade school year, the boy's parents decided to get a divorce. His younger sister and he were sent to live with an aunt in Virginia while the parents figured everything out. The mother and father took the kids for a ride in the car and while out, asked them which parent they wanted to live with. The boy was so hurt emotionally that he could do nothing but cry and wonder why his family could not stay together. The boy's sister was too young to fully understand, being daddy's little girl, she spoke up with little hesitation saying she wanted to live with the father. 3 months slowly passed in Virginia while the father got things in order to be a single dad, in a new town. The military had transferred him to Millington, Tennessee. The boy would now start at his 3rd school and 4th class for 3rd grade, 3 cities/schools and the 3rd grade class he went to half the day during 2nd grade. The boy's parents would once again have to argue with the school about the boy's need to be challenged in school being the reason he was acting out. Once again he would have to take an IQ test, once again he was put into an advanced program. This school called it APEX or the "advanced placement for the exceptional" or some such meaning.
Six months into living with the father, it was time for the mother to take over custody. She came down to get the kids and return to where she lived with the majority of her relatives in the Seattle area of Washington. During her trip to pick up the kids, the parents realized they really did belong together and were remarried a year after the day of their divorce. The boy and his family were whole again.
The family lived in the Memphis area of Tennessee for a few years before finally while the boy was in 6th grade, they moved to Yokosuka, Japan. A whole new world was shown to the family. The boy continued to enjoy a program for the "gifted" in 6th grade. For 7th grade the young boy, still small for his age, was suddenly placed into High School since the school there was 7-12 grades. He would now take one class a day to suit his "gifted" needs with the other classes regular 7th grade stuff.
The boy learned several valuable life lessons during this period of his life. He was put into Karate lessons with a Japanese Sensei and learned discipline and self-defense. He learned what it was like to be a minority as well, growing up as a white kid in the USA he was part of the majority, on the small base in Japan though, Filipino's out numbered Caucasians by a large number. He was picked on like a lot of minorities experience growing up. He was also exposed to many different cultures and races during this time and learned to appreciate the differences as a good thing and not bad.
Halfway through the 9th grade the military said it was time to move again, this time we were off to Sasebo, Japan. A smaller, more rural area of southern Japan than the big city area by Tokyo. This was a very different experience for him. He was now going to a school that was K-12 and typically had less than 30 students in the graduating class as opposed to hundreds that he was used to.
to be continued later...