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I admit it: I was born in Tacoma

It came as a disappointing surprise to me when I found out I was born in Tacoma, Washington.   You can only truly understand how heartbreaking this news was if you have lived for any length of time in Seattle, where I grew up.  Actually, you can only TRULY understand it if you ever drove through Tacoma 'way back when' I was a kid and pulp mills made it smell really, really bad. 

And then to find out I was BORN there?  My birth certificate proves it, complete with a very cute baby footprint.  Yet, this was a trauma in my childhood.

Therefore ... our president gets no pity from me.  Yes, he has had his struggles in proving (as he recently did, oh joy) that he was born in Hawaii.   But think about it:  he got to be born in Hawaii.   He deserves a little hardship.

Either way, it got me thinking about my many certificates of identity and accomplishment. 

I can't or won't necessarily show all of these to you, so please don't call the networks.  However, maybe you should know that I have certificates, licenses, badges and/or other tokens to establish:

I passed the presidential fitness exam in fifth grade even though I do throw like a girl.

I have offset the carbon footprint for my impending flight to Mongolia.  Somewhere, someday, trees will be planted in honor of my trip.  My certificate says so.

I own a piece of the moon.  Really.  There goes the neighborhood.

I have graduated from various schools, borne three children, married once and been ordained by the United Church of Christ.

I was invited to the inauguration of Barack Obama.   I was not so lucky for tomorrow's royal wedding.

I have greeting cards which testify to the fact I am the best mom, wife, friend, sister and daughter ever.   You say you have received similar assurances?  Maybe there are multiple jurisdictions involved.

By virtue of tax statements, voting registration cards, driver license, library card, passport and plain old opinionated expounding of excellent advice for political leaders of all stripes I can prove I am an American citizen.  However, I have decided not to run for president this time around.      

I have a Girl Scout sash with many badges as evidence of urgent childhood desires for approval.  

All these only begin to touch the heart of things, for inside I am still often a mystery to myself.  How can it be that I look as if I am almost 60, but so often feel 12 years old?  There are no certificates to explain that fact. 

Thank you for accepting  me the way I am.  I love that about church! 

With God's help we are plugging along and glad of it ... regardless of our documents or pedigrees.

In Christ,

Pastor Diane

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