hey jws....I think we met in Dallas at the Afest. Too bad we didn't get to chat about the KMS horrors then.
I was about 7 when I was asked if I wanted to join and I didn't even know what it was really. But, you know how it is when you have an elder and your mom standing over you with "that" look and you KNOW there is only ONE correct answer. I was probably the shyest of kids also and with my mom writing my talks and inserting words/phrases I had no clue about, well, I was a train wreck waiting to happen. Embarrased isn't the word - losing your place and stumbling along trying to get through it while the whole room laughs at you does not exactly fill you with confidence.
Then there's the flag salute thing. I don't think anyone's mentioned that yet. Stuck between your "beliefs" and teachers almost yelling threatening that everyone "had BETTER salute the flag...even if you are a Jehovah's Witness". All the kid's that had to endure that terror of being stuck between the immediate threats of teachers and the impending threats of god. What a life eh?
Overall, just being a witness kid was the worst pressure imaginable. Having to be so different and stand up for things that we couldn't really understand. Y'all know what I mean I think.