My growing up years were not always a bed of roses. Neither were they for my seven other siblings. We are all connected by blood, by the thread of a woman and man who tried to make their love work. We are all family….but we are also individuals as well. The memories of one may be tweaked slightly differently….depending on the years you had collected at the point of a particular memory. We all, have survived countless violent onslaughts to who God intended us to be from the very beginning. We all have been faced with the kinds of trauma intended to steal, kill and destroy all memory of the love that was truly God’s Heart for each one of us. We have all been faced with circumstances beyond our control and each of us has walked away from our collective beginnings within the nucleus of our blood family, to our individual stories of starting over in a society not necessarily on our “side”.
Our stories are REAL……our stories are FULL OF PAIN…….our stories are FULL OF LONGING FOR THE UNCONDITIONAL LOVE EVERY CHILD DESIRES….EVERY CHILD DESERVES. There were some bright moments along the way…..like stomping down the tall grass in a field in the hills of Missouri….like drinking Kool-Aid and saltines crackers and thinking what a wonderful treat it was…like climbing a tree and doing all my writing up there….like loading up in the spacious Buick and going to a big park in Detroit….like the simple pleasures you find because your creativity has not successfully been stifled…like when we think we can’t take one more hit, and then we tap into a hidden reserve that keeps us afloat. Each of us have found ways to express our hearts in a world that has tried to silence us. We each had memories that carried us while we ever hoped for more…because the hunger of our hearts could not….would not, be silenced! We each learned how to be satisfied with little, never knowing how poor we truly were. That being said, the world never had a clue how rich we really were!
So, in honor of my siblings, and in honor of the parents who gave us life; who have climbed steep mountains in their lives, who have waded through many a raging river and crossed many a desert, where they (and I) thought surely we would die…..I submit this Memorial to the fighting warriors of the family known as the HANSENS. WE ARE FAMILY!!!! WE ARE SURVIVORS AND HAVE NOT BEEN DESTROYED FROM WITHIN OR WITHOUT!
Our Mom, Mary Clara Vandervort…..and our Dad, Harold Bronniche Hansen Sr., gave us a gift that stands the tests of time. They gave each of us very good names. The Bible says: Proverbs 22:1-2…”A good name is to be chosen rather than great riches, loving favor rather than silver and gold. The rich and the poor have this in common,The Lord is the maker of them all.”
Thank you, Mom and Dad, for giving us such rich names…..such names of meaning and purpose….that when any of us questions our worth or our value…..any one of us can draw from that “reservoir” that bore the seeds of our beginnings and of our worth. Thank you, Mom and Dad for doing the best you could, given your own pain levels in a life that wasn’t always “fair”…..a life that didn’t always give what you needed to be whole and healed and complete. We love, accept, forgive shortcomings, and give honor and respect to you both. You may have failed in some areas…..but so have we.
In the names you have given each of us….lie our heritage and our worth. May we step up and into those names! May we forgive, accept and honor our humble beginnings. And I dare say, that you both (Mom & Dad) wanted way more for us than the hand you were dealt…..and I for one…..accept and step into…..the more!
What I present in writing…..I pray, will not only bring you (my beloved siblings) hope….but will also bring you rest over your weary souls. In the deepest part of you, my beloved brothers and sisters….may you be healed and restored to the status of the royal sons and daughters of the King that you are, and always have been!!! Each of our names are inlaid with precious jewels. Each of our names speak into us, and call us to rise up into a greater blessing than any of us has ever known! And each of our names is written on the palm of the ONE (Isaiah 49:15-18) who first loved us, has loved us at our worst, and who loves us with a love that WILL NOT let go.
Eight children…….Eight blessings!!!
1. Candace Lee: (went by Candy)
Candace: Language origin: Greek. Inherent meaning: Unblemished. Spiritual meaning: Shining brightly, glittering. Isaiah 62:3 – You shall also be a crown of glory in the hand of the Lord, and a royal diadem in the hand of your God.
Lee: Language origin: German. Inherent meaning: From the Sheltered Place. Spiritual meaning: Gracious Romans 8:16 – The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God.
2. Harold Bronniche (Junior) – (went by the nickname of Chris)
Harold: Language origin: Old English. Inherent meaning: Army Leader. Spiritual meaning: Born of God Acts 17:28 – For in Him we live and move and have our being, as also some of your own poets have said, for we are also His offspring.
Bronniche: Surname from Grandmother’s maiden name
Chris (Christopher): Nickname from early childhood. (given by Danish grandparents from fathers side) Language origin: Greek. Inherent meaning: Bearer/Carrier of Christ. Spiritual meaning: Anointed. Galatians 6:17 – Finally, let no one cause me trouble, for I bear on my body the marks of Jesus.
3. Don Allen:
Don: Language origin: Gaelic. Inherent meaning: World Leader. Spiritual meaning: Faithful. James 2:22 Do you see that faith was working together with his works, and by works faith was made perfect?
Allen: Language origin: Irish. Inherent meaning: Harmonious. Spiritual meaning: At One With Creation. II Corinthians 13:11 – Be of good comfort, be of one mind, live in peace; and the God of love and peace will be with you.
4. Victoria Lynn: (went by Vicky)
Victoria: Language origin: Latin. Inherent meaning: Conqueror. Spiritual meaning: Triumphant Spirit. Philippians 4:13 – I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.
Lynn: Language origin: English. Inherent meaning: Crystal Clear Pool. Spiritual meaning: Holy. Proverbs 9:10 – The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is understanding.
5. Tamara Kay: (went by Tammy)
Tamara: Language origin: Hebrew. Inherent meaning: Palm Tree. Spiritual meaning: Victorious Spirit. Micah 5:0 – Your hand shall be lifted up over your adversaries, and all your enemies shall be cut off.
Kay: Language origin: Latin. Inherent meaning: Rejoicer. Spiritual meaning: Joyful. Proverbs 15:23 – To make an apt answer is a joy to anyone, and a word in season, how good it is!
6. Linda Darlene:
Linda: Language origin: Spanish. Inherent meaning: Beautiful Spiritual meaning: Excellent Virtue. James 5:16 – Therefore confess your sins to one another, and pray for one another, so that you may be healed. The prayer of the righteous is powerful and effective.
Darlene: Language origin: French. Inherent meaning: Darling. Spiritual meaning: Magnificent, Loving. I Peter 4:8 – Above all, maintain constant love for one another, for love covers a multitude of sins.
7. James Wesley: (went by Jimmy…..now goes by Jim)
James: Language origin: Hebrew. Inherent meaning: Supplanter; takes the place, or moves into the position of another….alternative, replacement, substitute. Spiritual meaning: Nurtured. Psalm 23:4 – Yea, though I walk through the valley of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; and thy rod and thy staff, they comfort me.
Wesley: Language origin: English. Inherent meaning: From the Wheat Field. Spiritual meaning: Witness. John 4:35 – Look around you! Vast fields are ripening all around us and are now ready for harvest.
8. Carol Sue:
Carol: Language origin: French. Inherent meaning: Song of Joy. Spiritual meaning: Joy of God. John 15:11 – These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full.
Sue: Language of origin: Hebrew. Inherent meaning: Graceful Lily. Spiritual meaning: Purity. Proverbs 4:18 – But the path of the righteous is like the light of the dawn, which shines brighter and brighter until full day.
I love and am proud of each and every one of my brothers and sisters, and I know beyond a shadow of a doubt, that what the enemy has all along intended for evil against us, has been turned around for our GOOD, by the heart of our loving “Heavenly Papa”….who not only has a purpose and plan for each of us, but has also proved His love to each of us….not just in words (which have proven empty and lacking by all of our life experiences), but with action, that we desperately needed to see. An action that stretched out his arms on a rugged cross, paying a price we could not pay for ourselves! (Romans 8:28, John 3:16)
[If anyone would like a name looked up for it’s origins and meanings……I would be most happy to provide that information for you. My sources were the Bible, and The Name Book, by Dorothy Astoria.]