Custard-Filled Donuts

My first job was at the bakery in the Towne Mall. It was a small place with one set of lit glass display cases. Shoppers stared at the custard-filled donuts, coconut macaroons, and apple fritters as they passed by. I was especially drawn to the custard-filled donuts.

Being a high-school junior, I worked the after-school shift. Friends waved or stopped to talk for a minute or two on their way to other stores. I greeted customers with a smile, filled their orders, kept the cases fully stocked, and packed the goodies away at closing.

Soon I noticed that the longer a person worked at the bakery the more responsibilities he or she was awarded. I watched as other teens baked the coconut macaroons, glazed the apple fritters, and filled the donuts with custard. I looked forward to the day when I would get to move up the corporate ladder.

As the weeks passed, I observed a co-worker with less seniority than me getting to fill the donuts with custard. I kept smiling and kept greeting customers and kept restocking the glass cases. But I never got asked to fill the donuts with custard. One night at closing, I casually said to my co-worker, “I wonder when I’ll get to fill the donuts with custard?”

FREEZE TIME. I was seventeen. I had the highest GPA in the Class of ’79 at Madison High School. I could wiggle with the best of them on the drill team in the Mohawk Marching Band. I was emerging as a leader as president of the junior class. I was singing at weekend gigs with the Country Breeze Band. I was riding my Honda 90, water skiing, and dating. I had no limitations and the world was before me.

UNFREEZE TIME. My co-worker replied, “The owner says you can’t fill the donuts with custard because you only have one arm.”

I looked at her blankly and blurted out, “What?” Confused, I replayed the words in my head. I couldn’t process them. I struggled, “What does my arm have to do with custard-filled donuts?” I simply could not make the connection.

In that one unexpected moment I was introduced to the rest of my life.


We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. 2 Corinthians 4:8-9

Custard-filled donuts are still my favorite!

Custard-filled donuts are still my favorite!

24 thoughts on “Custard-Filled Donuts

  1. Wow Becky, I never knew you worked at the donut shop. But I do remember all the other things that you did. Water skiiing, drillteam, riding the Honda, playing the piano, singing in the band and at churches, dating, etc., etc. I never looked at you as different from any of us. I always looked up to you and admired you for never giving up and not letting your arm hinder you in anything you ever did. You are awesome and I love you so much. That’s a very good story. Thanks for sharing it with us. 🙂 (You sure did wiggle good too. LOL) Love ya, your little cuz Marla


  2. Becky–sometimes folks would be talking to me and refer to you as ‘my friend with one arm?’ and I would actually have to stop and think a minute about who they were talking about…. seriously… I just NEVER thought of you with that label !!! Then, I’d say…. ‘oh, Becky?’ Like, are you sure you’re talking about the right person? lol…

    Heck… you accomplished MORE than every one of us in HS !!! (Drill team, stick shifts, class president, roller skating queen, etc., etc.!!) I thought of you more as my friend who bulldozed through everything that even considered standing in her way!!!

    Sorry… but to me you’ll always be just ‘my wonderful friend, Becky!’ I’d be afraid to label you with any other descriptions… lol… you’d bulldoze me over!!!

    ♥ I love you!!! ♥


    • Lots of fun memories with you! Riding in your bug, listening to the Beatles over and over and over, double dating, football games that we never watched, spending the night at your house, your fun mom, our two Florida trips, going to the Bay City Rollers concert… I’m singing now, “Thank you for being a friend.”


  3. Great Story! I lived with you everyday and I’ve never heard that story. Thanks for sharing. I think the store owner missed his opportunity to recognize who he had working for him. Wonder where he is now??? Filling his own donuts with custard? Probably…still wearing blinders and can’t see the forest for the trees. Keep writing, sister! Love, Cindy


  4. Thanks for sharing your story. Working along side you at church only amazed me at the strength and stamina you possessed. I never thought of you as having only one arm, but having a loving and caring heart for God. I feel privileged that my children were under your ministry and that you helped bring them both to the Lord. You also taught them to treat people the same no matter what. You’re an amazing person and God has truly blessed anyone that has come in contact with you! Loved the story and keep going strong! Your friend, Cheryl


    • You and Philip were right there beside me ministering to those kids! Those camps were absolute killers on the adults, but oh my gosh. SO MUCH FUN. You know now there are kids camps you can just sign up for, take the kids and hang out for a few days. Not like the old days, for sure. Haha. Love you and thanks for your kind words.


  5. To me you are just the sweetest, smartest, do anything and there for each other best friend. You have given me so many blessings. Those people missed out! You can accomplish anything you set your mind to as well- if not better- than anyone else!!! I should know after 16 years. I am grateful every day that you are my friend. Don’t know what I would do without you. That is a new story to me. I can’t believe you worked in a bakery and haven’t told me! Love ya girl! Julia


  6. WOW! Thanks for sharing your story with me. You are one of my best friends and one of the most inspiring people I have ever met! I love you and thank God for you being in my life and more importantly in my daughter’s life as a child. I am ALWAYS in awe of what you accomplish in life. I’m sorry that you had to deal with a boss like that ever, but especially at a young age. I think of all the people you touched by being at the counter, that wouldn’t have had your beautiful smile to cheer them possibly at a time when they needed it most. You have touched a lot of people thru your life. What a blessing you are. Even to those you never knew you touched. I wish I could have ridden Honda’s with you! Wouldn’t that have been cool! And I wish I could have wiggled with you, but you have more groove than me, sooooo, I will just be thankful that you are my dear friend, Becky! LOVE YA Girl!


  7. Becky, what a great story! I for one, am glad that donut-shop owner didn’t let you fill the donuts. If he had, it could’ve changed the course of history, and I wouldn’t be getting to work alongside the BEST Ministry Systems Pastor EVER!!!! What a blessing you are! I’m convinced, there’s NOTHING you can’t do!


  8. Becky, what a fantastic story and testimony of how God has blessed you in your life. In the two and a half years that you were our Family Pastor at HHBC from January 2004 to mid-2007 I don’t recall having heard this part of your story. Yes, you did tell your story in a message that you delivered to our congregation in January of 2007, but I would have to replay the CD that I made to fresh my feeble memory. I never ever felt that you had just “one arm”, in fact I was always amazed at how well you seemed to cope with your prosthetic arm and everything that you could do. God truly does compensate us with other gifts as He did with you even though we must sometimes face adversity, hardships, disabilities, and trials as we go through what He has designed for our lives. Your reference to 2 Corinthains 4:8-9 pretty much summarizes Gods provision for our lives as His tool for grooming us to serve Him in His greater plan that He might be glorified.

    I am so thankful that God brought you to Kentucky to serve with us for that brief time and for the lifetime friendship that we will enjoy here on this Earth and the eternal life that we anticipate. We love you and your family dearly and can’t wait until we can meet up again for another road trip. Thanks for sharing your story! What a great inspiration you are! Hugs from Kentucky!


  9. Becky:

    Fun stuff to learn about you! And I love those creme-filled doughnuts!!! (I should have been a police officer!) 🙂

    I remember one time us talking about you having one arm. The question…”Do you miss having only one arm?” Your response, “I have never had two arms, so basically, I don’t know what I am missing. I function with one arm and really don’t consider it a handicap.”

    Maybe that is how life should be when we are envious of others. If you don’t have it, don’t envy it. So easy to say, so hard to live.

    We love you, Becky! Our life is better because we know you.

    It was a JOY working with you and Jud!!!



  10. BECKY!!!!! You only have one arm???!!!!!! Are you sure???!! :o) You know – until I knew you for a while I NEVER noticed that about you. I always noticed your smile – it’s beautiful by the way! – and how your eyes sparkle and how you embrace life and everyone around you. You are such a wonderful blessing and even now as I think about you I am smiling.

    Thank you for sharing this story and opening my eyes to how I myself am not living up to my full potential that God has in mind for me.

    God bless you, sweet lady!! Your friend – Kathy


  11. Mrs. Becky, I love your perspective on life, and how you handle the rough situations we are placed in. It’s always a pleasure to hear you speak at church, or share a story on FB. Your attitude is contagious.
    P.S. I cannot believe you worked at a donut shop, I would be as big as a house!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


  12. You know that was an amazing and inspirational story. You know I never noticed that you only had one arm and a prosthetic one. Only one day when we were talking did I notice it. I’m glad you didn’t fill the donuts. You might be running a bakery instead of inspiring an entire congregation with your smile and way of supporting everyone. I’m glad to know you.


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