Friday, 7 June 2013


I sure am glad I stayed in high school and graduated back in 1975. Though a high school diploma isn't worth much these days, I feel a sense of accomplishment that I hung in there and passed grade twelve.

I nearly gave up because of the math course I took. Try as I did, I just couldn't get my mind around fractions. My poor teacher almost tore out his hair trying to get me to understand what he was getting at.

In my How I Was Razed memoir, I mentioned my high school years but not how I nearly quit. Sister Eileen drove me home from the Wednesday church meeting one June evening. As she pulled up to the sidewalk of the house in which I rented a basement room, I poured out my heart about the problems I had with math. She encouraged me to hang in for just two more weeks. Reluctantly, I agreed.

In 1991, I took a remedial mathematics class at a community college. All those equations that my high school teacher tried so hard to teach me suddenly made sense. Furthermore, the course teacher used real world problems to illustrate mathematical principles. One fact that astonished me was that it's cheaper to hire two employees working twelve-hour shifts than three working eight. Even with time-and-a-half for the last four hours of the shifts, it still works out cheaper. Discoveries such as that encouraged me to take a new look at numbers.

I also mentioned my chronic poverty in How I Was Razed memoir. I received social assistance at the time as my dad didn't give me much to live on. Even so, I couldn't afford to go to my graduation ceremony and rent a gown and cap. I did pick up my diploma from the school office afterward and handed it to my mom for safe keeping. I now have it in my safety deposit box with my other important documents.

Persistence really does pay off, as I found out. When things get tough, I've learned to take my problems to the Lord and leave the things I can't change in his hands. Like we used to say on the CB radio, we send our signals out twenty-six miles and the Lord does the rest.

The e-book version, Kindle and Nook, of How I Was Razed: A Journey from Cultism to Christianity can now be purchased from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Virtual Bookworm Publishers. You can also get the paperback version from Virtual Bookworm.

1 comment:

  1. I was never good at math, either. In the sixth grade, a teacher threatened me with an eighteen-inch ruler when I had trouble with long division. I wrote about that on my blog at
    Fortunately, I wasn't required to take math after the ninth grade. I still had tough times in high school, but because I lived in a loving family environment, it never occurred to me to drop out. I don't remember if I had to rent my cap and gown, but I was able to attend my high school graduation. As I walked across the stage to receive my diploma, I was given a standing ovation by my classmates. You're right, Bruce. It pays to hang in there.


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