Elizabeth Ann Marie Taft  Helle

                                                                    Journey of Life

   For some reason my life has never been simple.  Always complex and confusing.  I never had the chance to listen to the Helle stories like my cousins did growing up.  But I did have a lot of first hand experiences of life's lessons. 
   Being a child was never a option for me.  I had to always try to reason and understand like an adult.  The only time I could escape and be me was when I was writing a story, poem or journeling.  I felt I had to be independent and responsible for myself at a very young age.  Especially after my dad got sent away.  Mom did what was best for my brother and I.  Even though some may disagree. 
  At a young age of 11, I went to church and found out that I'm not alone. That God loved me and He wanted to give me peace and happiness.  So I accepted the invitation and asked Jesus to come into my life.  Still at times the sadness reached  so deep I thought I would never have a good life. I considered myself a big puzzle with several pieces scattered all over the place. 
   Something inside me kept telling me to keep fighting and striving to be better than my parents.  And no matter what NEVER QUIT.  I knew then that one day this life of mine was gonna be behind me.  I struggled so much along the way, but I kleaned to God and His word.  Knowing that God was gonna take care of me.
   My relationship between my mother and I grew difficult as I grew into a teenager.  My anger and fear grew more evident during that time.  But I still made a pack to forgive my parents no matter what.  Wrote my dad often but I still yearned for his presence. 
  I felt so lost and confused with little happiness along the way.  Made myself happy through other people.  Never truly experience true happiness.  Not realizing the true happiness is up to the person in the mirror. 
   When I was 17 years of age, I went to Moscow, Russia for a month on a mission trip.  What a life changing event.  During that time I gave myself to God like never before.  It seemed the black cloud that followed me slowly left.  Graduating from high school was another great achievement for me, because the stats of the system said I should of been a drop out.  A year after graduation I met the man of my life.  I had know idea that he was gonna turn my world upside down. He showed me that life was too short to live the way I was living.  He excepted me, my fears, insecurities, sadness, and my family pain.  Slowly through the years I learned to forgive and live my life to the fullness. 
  April 30, 1999, my dad is out and is living a new life. With new beginnings ahead of him.  But it was also a chapter closed in my life.  A new and different relationship was built between us.  He became my friend more than my father.  The "Sins of the Father" no longer laid on my shouders.
   So I may not heard all the family stories, music, or laughter but I definely had something passed down to me through blood that is to persevere no matter what hand of cards have been dealt.
   My heart will always ache wishing and thinking how different my life would of been if Grandpa Don was not killed at such a young age.  I guess I will never know.  I hope one thing though that Grandma Still, Uncle Kenny and Aunt Karen know how much I love and miss them deeply.

Elizabeth Ann Marie (Helle) Taft
July 2002
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