Ethel's Writing's


Fay's Story (c) Ethel Hiday Wicksey 


As God Sees Us,  Fay’s Story


This is Fay’s Story

   Fay once said that when she looked into the mirror, it cracked. She avoided having her picture taken. She was the one who always took the pictures, at family and Church functions. On picture day at school, she would develop a stomachache and stay home. When she graduated from grade twelve, she looked at her yearbooks. There were not any pictures of her in them. It was if she had never gone to high school. There were no pictures of Fay in the family albums either.

   Fay was born with a deformity. Her eyes were crooked and no operations were able to correct the eyes. It was so bad that she could see out of only one eye. The other one, the weaker one would not work even though it had good vision. Her family had seen her reaction at the plaza, when people would stare at her; shake their heads, then walk away talking about her.

   God has given me a gift. When I see people for the first time, I try to see their heart. I don’t look at the outside. By the time, I do see the outward shell we have become friends.

   I am writing this story so that it will help us look at the hurting people of this world differently. I want them to feel our love and the love of God. Remember the Bible does not say, “Only the beautiful people of this world are created in God’s image.” “We are all created in the image of God”.

I can write this story from my heart. I do know about being teased. I was hurt so badly by being called names. My Brother Ron was born with a hole in his face. He had a harelip and clef pallet. His top lip, gum and the roof of his mouth were missing at birth. He was five years younger than I was. My older brother went to the special School. He couldn’t speak well. He had a hard time learning. I didn’t do well in school. I think a lot of it was because I was teased and picked on, so much.

   Name-calling does hurt and scars our hearts. My maiden name was Wicksey. Whiskey rhymes with Wicksey. I was called whiskey bottle for about eight years. The kids would tease me and say my father (who never drank a drop of alcohol) was a drunkard. Kids in school have to have someone to tease and pick on. Our family was the one in our neighborhood. All my brothers and sisters were picked on also. One day after my father just painted our middle class white house; the boys followed me home from school and threw mud at it. It got so bad that some of my girl friends would walk me home from school, so that I wasn’t hurt by the bullies. That is enough about me. Let’s look at how Fay handled her teasing.

   Let us pretend that we can see Fay’s life through God’s eyes. Don’t you think that Jesus and God shed a few tears when they see people especially children being hurt. 



   Fay was born in nineteen forty two, into a middle class home. She had a loving Christian family. She was an unexpected child. Fay was ten years younger than her twin sisters, Jean and Joan. Her brother Ben was in High School and Roger was in grade eight.

Fay’s mother had been sick during her pregnancy. She had died in childbirth. The doctors and nurses struggled to keep Fay alive. Some of the nurses said it would be a blessing if she died. Fay had inherited the one thing that her family dreaded. Her eyes were like Clarence the Lion on TV. She was cross-eyed. She was so cross-eyed that the doctors said that nothing could be done to fix it. It wasn’t just her eyes. One-half of her face was crooked. Back then, they didn’t do the surgery they do now.

   Her sisters and brothers could hardly wait for her to arrive home from the hospital. They prayed and waited with anticipation. The special day came when Fay was well enough to go home. Their father left with the special cradle made by her brothers Ben and Roger. It was filled with a baby blanket along with a layette her sister’s Jean and Joan had knitted. It was no shock to her siblings when they saw Fay for the first time. Their Aunt Bea looked just the same. She had come to live with them when their mother was sick.

   Fay’s brothers and sisters pampered her. Most of the time, Aunt Bea would hold Fay in her lap rocking her to sleep. She was the child that her Aunt Bea had longed for but never had.

   Fay had many operations. Some of them worked but most of them didn’t make any difference. After her last operation, the doctors told her family that they couldn’t do any more. Fay’s face would be crooked and she would have crossed eyes the rest of her life.

   All the pictures of Fay, had been destroyed by fire. No,… the house did not burn down! One day, Fay came home crying. The kids at school had been extra mean that day. They teased her and had thrown mud all over her new dress. She went into the den and removed all the pictures ever taken of herself. She took them off the wall and out of the family albums. She tore them all up. She placed them into the fireplace and lit a match to burn them all up. She looked into the mirror above the fireplace. Fay shouted, “I hate you! I hate you!” She curled up on the rug and cried until there were no more tears left. Her Aunt Bea found her sound asleep curled up in a ball on the rug in front of the fireplace. All that was left of her childhood pictures were little corners that the fire had missed.

   Bea cradled Fay in her arms. She held her with an aching heart until she awoke. “Aunt Bea” little Fay asked, “Were the children mean to you at school also?” 

   “Yes my dear precious Fay. That is why I went to work as a teacher at the blind school. No one ever saw my face there. They only felt the love from my heart. I tried teaching at the other schools. The parents would protest and I was never hired back for the second year.”

   “How come you never married, did anyone love you Aunt Bea?” 

   “Yes I was loved. Your mother was my best friend. We were twins. It was so hard when she died. I was engaged to your Uncle Jim. Jim and I had grown up together. We made sand castles in the sand at the river as children. We even built a tree house in the old oak tree.

   “I still remember the day we got engaged. It is as if it was yesterday. I had been away at teacher’s college. Jim was home on leave. He was going to be shipped out to England the following week. We went down to the river and were making sand castles, when Jim reached into the picnic basket and pulled out a little black box. He opened it up ever so slowly with tears in his eyes. He always called me his little Honey Bea. He asked me if I would wait until he was able to come home. He wanted me to be his wife. He placed this engagement ring on my finger and told me he had always loved me.”

   “The week went ever so fast. He climbed into the train to go back to the Army Base. We sent letters back and forth for two years. One morning his brother, your father came over and told me that Jim was dead. He had died saving a friend. It still hurts to think about it. My life has never been the same.”

   “Did you ever have any other boy friends, Aunt Bea?”

   “No Fay. I sort of hid myself away in my work. I have lots of friends but never had the desire to marry anyone but Jim.

   “Why don’t you go up and have a bath while I clean up this mess? If I remember correctly, I did the same thing as you when I was 12. We do have negatives and when you are ready we can have copies made.”

   Fay’s brothers and sisters soon went off to college and the wedding bells started to ring. Fay was left in the big house with her Father and Aunt Bea. Fay was so lonely. The night of the prom came and went. Fay sat at home all alone. Her schoolmates liked her but no one asked her to go out with them. They were sort of embarrassed at how she looked. Her friends would invite her to their homes sometimes, but they didn’t want to be seen with Fay in public.

   Fay was broken and bruised by friends as the years went by. It was her love of Jesus, that pulled her through. Her Aunt Bea sang songs of Jesus’ love. Jesus loved her! So often, she would go sit at her vanity and find the words “JESUS LOVES YOU FAY” in dark red lipstick on her mirror. She would open her lunch and find a piece of paper with a Bible reading affirming God’s love. The thoughts of suicide had entered her mind a few times but the memory of how much God and her family loved her, stopped her.

   In her second year at university, Roy fell into her life. Yes! I said fell! Roy had polio when he was seven. He wore a brace on his right leg. He needed a cane to help him walk. Most people would ignore him. One rainy spring day, Roy tripped over a rock left on the path. He sort of fell at Fay’s feet. His books fell into a puddle of water. His glasses were all covered with mud. He looked so funny! Fay could not help laughing. It was lucky that Roy had a sense of humor. He started to laugh with her. Before long they were laughing so hard, the tears were flowing down their faces mingling with the raindrops. Fay helped Roy up and offered to drive him home. Her car was just around the corner. Roy said he would accept the ride if Fay would let him take her out for dinner. She agreed. She waited in the car while Roy went up to change his clothes.

   Fay had never tasted chicken so good. Roy didn’t even mind having Fay cut up his steak. He had little use of his right arm or hand. He had never ordered a steak at a restaurant before, without someone from his family there to help him. Fay wasn’t embarrassed to help Roy.

   Soon Fay was picking Roy up and driving him to school. She lived in the next block. It was hard for Roy to get on the city bus with his books. Two years went by and on the day of their graduation, Roy asked Fay to marry him. He had been offered a position as a counselor at a school for handicapped children. Fay applied and was hired as a teacher at the same school.

   Fay and Roy were married. I can’t say that they lived happily ever after. We all know that marriage is hard work. People still stared at Roy and Fay when they were out in public. Some would be rude and point fingers at them. What they never got to see, was their hearts, the way God saw them.

   Roy and Fay spent hours with families of children that were born deformed. They shared how God loved them just the way they were. They told them of how people would be rude and stare at them. Fay shared her story, about how she had been angry and burnt all her pictures, and how the children at school teasing her had hurt. They told how people talked to them as if they were idiots. Most never took the time to get to know them. People did not care that they both had graduated with honors from university.

   Roy and Fay shared how the Love of Jesus in their lives helped take away the hurts. The parents, were given a phone number and told, to call if they needed a shoulder to cry on. So many lives were changed by the love of Fay and Roy.

   Next time you see someone that does not fit in. I mean people who are too tall, too big, too fat, too skinny, scars on their face, can’t walk, can’t see, can’t read, born deformed, remember that they are born in God’s image just like you. What our society calls beautiful, might not be beautiful to God. God looks at our hearts. Take time to get past people’s looks, and see their heart like Jesus sees it.

   You just might find a new friend.

                A jewel, given to you from God!


© Ethel Hiday Wicksey



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