The Wonderful World of Davey

January 25, 2009
By Paige Lechner, Louisville, KY

“Tell me a story Davey! Please! I promise I’ll fall asleep if you just tell me ONE story!” Simple words, often over played, but not in an annoying sense. My stepfather David, whom I refer to as Davey, listened to me beg and plead almost every night of my childhood for a bed time story. He tucked me in every night, and for me, it was impossible to sleep without a narration of an event that Davey encountered in his younger years.

Davey and I first met when I was only a few weeks old, and from that moment on, it was safe to say I had him “wrapped around my pretty little finger.” As cliché as it might sound, it is absolutely true. For example, I refused to go to bed without Davey right by the side of my crib letting me hold onto his finger through the bars. And when dinnertime came around, I wouldn’t touch any morsel of food unless it came off of Davey’s plate and he had to be the one who fed it to me. Even more spoiled I became when I actually started comprehending the stories he told me, then there was no chance of him leaving until I had heard one.

Now, whether Davey’s tales were true or fabricated, I may never know, but they accomplished the act of grabbing every inch of my undivided attention. With his invigorating emotion and intense detail, Davey brought me into a captivating world that I never wanted to leave. Although I heard each story an uncountable number of times each, Davey never failed to spark my imagination. “As I rounded the bases in my pinstripe uniform, I pictured how proud my grandparents were sitting on the sidelines. It was the first time they had ever seen me hit a home run, and I scored against the best pitcher in the league.” Every time I heard each story, it was just as interesting as the last time it was told.

Now, as I grew older, I began to fabricate stories of my own, and who was the honorary listener? Davey was of course and he enjoyed every minute of it. Unrealistic they might have seemed and I’m sure the stories weren’t always relayed in sequential order, but I thought they were great and so did Davey.

Then came my obsession. Dr. Suess. Many children have fancied and many more will probably fancy the unbridled fantasy world of the Dr. Suess books. And like most children, I became a collector. Bedtime stories no longer consisted of “whatever was on the tip of my tongue.” Introduced to me was the imagination of all imaginations. I read a Dr. Suess book to Davey every night and I was tossed into a whirlwind of color, creatures, and creations. It probably wasn’t as intriguing for Davey, but it made me feel grown up, and he flattered that. Davey let me know that I could be anything I wanted to be and do anything I wanted to if I just set my mind to it. At an early age I lost every bit of shyness in my body and began to set my self up for success. At family gatherings Davey would get the attention of everyone just so I could make my “Pronouncement” as I called it. I can’t remember how many times I read Green Eggs and Ham at my brothers’ birthday parties, but it is safe to say they had every word memorized. Little did I know that this would spark my passion for poetry.

However, eventually my obsession ended, and I no longer needed to be tucked into bed at night, but Davey and I will always share that special bond. When I reached middle school and began to write poetry, Davey was the one person I presented my poems to first. “Keep up the good work Paigey, one day I’m going to get you published,” he reminds me often. Poetry is the link to my inner self, however, to this day I still enjoy reading, and yes, occasionally I do still pick up a Dr. Suess book. I am then “teleported” into the fondest memories of my childhood that I shared with my one and only Davey.

As I grow older my dreams become clearer and my future begins to unfold. I have career goals of attending college and law school and in this profession I am positive I will utilize the tools that Davey once implanted in my mind. Literacy is important, whether it is in story telling or poetry or reading or making a “pronouncement,” it carries oneself to great places and should never be underestimated.

The author's comments:
Davey is my step father and he has known me since I was born. He saved our lives when he decided to stay in them. I love him like my father.

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