Not Like Me


I have found that I need to surround myself with people who are not like me. I grow the most when I am around those who think differently than I do.

Now don’t get me wrong, I have many groups that I am part of where I am surrounded by like-minded people – we share the same views, the same faith, and the same visions – and I love those people, but for the most part, they are just like me.

I get excited when I meet someone “different.”

I find myself asking all sorts of questions and trying to figure out why they are the way they are. I want to know about where they came from and what their story is. We all have a story.

I do not shy away from hard conversations, and I don’t engage in arguments or debates; I just listen and learn. Often when people find out I am in the ministry, they think I am out to convert them or guilt them into following a church or a person. I do have beliefs and opinions and will share them if asked, but I find learning about other people who are not like me, teaches me. I want to hear your story and learn from you.

Over the past few years, I have been changed by a mother, who is 18 months sober and desperately trying to be the mother she wished she could have been when she was in active addiction. She has taught me about muscle memory and how she still struggles with choices and has to remember each day that she is a new creation.

I have been changed by a man who shared with me that the reason he chose a life of drugs and crime was that he could not handle the trauma he had as a child when he was put up for adoption while his parents kept his brothers. He helped me as I shared I had adopted children who may feel the same way, and shared ways I could help my sons.

I was changed by the girl that was having sexual identity questions, and we talked and cried and spent time trying to figure out her next steps.

We don’t have to be the same. We both have a lot to learn, even if you are not like me.

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Cheryl Brackemyre
Hey local mommas! I grew up in Centerville, but I now live in Wilmington with my husband Tony. Together we have 6 kids, Joe, and his wife Allison, Austin, and his wife Hannah, Sydney and her husband Hayden, Andrew and his wife Lauren and our littles, Max and Eli. Did I mention we are a little nuts starting over with this parenting thing when we are 45+? We are officially adding new titles to our names in 2022- Tiki and Jeep (our version of Grandma and Grandpa). My husband and I are both ministers, and we get to work together in a local church. We were both married before and brought our families together in 2010. After a few years of marriage we felt God's leading for us to adopt. We added Max to our family in 2014 and Eli joined us in 2017, our quiver is officially full! Blending our family has been an adventure! Add some ex-spouses and two birth mommas and we have ourselves a crazy crew! Coffee is my love language. The beach is my happy place and I long to have my toes in the sand.


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