Estimated reading time: 9 minute(s)
by Jesse Muhammad (Originally PostedÂ 9.20.2009)
It has now been a little over two weeks since I first announced to the world via GlobalGrind.com that I was embarking on a journey with my mother to find out theÂ true identity of my biological father.
As you may have read in my previous updates, this search has moved faster than we expected. Many blessings have occurred to bring us one step closer to the truth.Â And an even larger step was taken this past week.
On September 17, 2009, I met with Earl Rideaux for the first time in person in 12 years.Â The last time I saw him, I was playing one of my last basketball games as a senior at Forest Brook High School. He came to see me play against Channelview High….but honestly I did not remember how he looked.
My mother picked me up to head over to his apartment in Northeast Houston. She filmed me sharing my thoughts as we drove on the freeway. Plus she videoed me once we got to the apartment. I will post those videos soon.
I knocked on the door of the apartment. My mother was smiling hard. Me too. The door opened and greeting me with a warm smile was Brittney, one of his daughters that I met on Labor Day. Then I heard Earl’s voice yellÂ “He’s here. Come on in son!”.
He hugged me and my first thought was “Man he’s tall and long”, which is one of the reasons my mother had assumed he was my father. He then introduced me to his wife and about seven of his grandchildren were present too; he has a total of twelve. That means I could have twelve more nieces and nephews. Then two of the other daughters, Crystal and Tiffany, came out to embrace me with smiles.
After being there for a few more moments, we headed to the clinic to get the DNA test. He would not stop talking the entire time. He shared with us how he survived two fatal shootings that brought him to death’s door.Â Both times the doctors told him he would be paralyzed or would not make it at all.Â He even showed me some of the scars from the surgery he had the first time from being shot point blank with a 9mm by a carjacker. Those scars are hard to stare at.
We arrived at theÂ DNA Testing Center owned by Dr. John LovelyÂ for a 6:00pm appointment. We filled out the paperwork and then Dr. Lovely used swabs to rub the inside of our right cheeks. Packaged up the samples, sealed them up for shipping and that was a wrap in ten minutes. Before leaving, Earl and I talked in the parking lot about his views on religion, his personal struggles, the good things he’s heard about me from his brother, and that regardless of the outcome he is happy to have me in his life at this time.Â I will share more of this conversation at another time. We then drove him back home. When we got to the apartment complex, he made a very serious statement to me. He said“I never knew why God spared my life those two times until today. I have come to realize that he spared my life so we could have this day, this moment. Regardless of the outcome of that test, this has been a special day for me, son.”
Those words stuck with me. Because if he had died…..wellÂ no need to dwell onÂ that because he is alive. I am too and so are you if you’re reading this blog. Appreciate life.