Thursday, April 3, 2014
Can you remember what it was like when the only worry you had was whether you’d be chosen for a rousing game of Red Rover or if the gangly boy in your 3rd grade class was going to chase you home after school? When I was a kid my parents did an excellent job of shielding me from any of the grown-up worries they may have had. There was always enough food to eat, a warm bed to sleep in and someone close by to listen to my prayers and tuck me in at night. What more could any kid need or want?
My friends all lived within a ½ block of my house and were readily accessible for play. Sometimes we would just sit in the cool clover in front of someone’s house and look for 4 leaf clovers. Sometimes we would weave chains from the clover’s white flowers. We’d shape them into bracelets and crowns wearing them as we searched for the precious 4 leaf clovers. We were never in a rush to leave because there wasn’t anyplace any more important at that moment.
The biggest difference I see to day from when I was a kid is that we knew we weren’t the center of the universe. I knew that my parent’s relationship came first, then their relationship with us. We knew we should respect our teachers the same way we respected our parents.
Our mother didn’t chauffeur us from one activity to another because there was only one family car. After school we played until 5:00 then we went in to eat dinner as a family. After supper it was time for homework with usually one parent sitting close by to provide help if needed. When our work was finished we were allowed to watch TV with our parents until 8:00 and then it was bedtime. It wasn’t complicated we just knew what the rules were and we obeyed them. Our home was no democracy….it was a dictatorship and there was only one dictator, our dad. He was the figurehead of the family and he called the shots. In exchange, we, his happy little subjects, were provided everything we needed…not wanted and thus we learned a valuable life lesson.
The world has changed so much in my life time that I sometimes feel like an alien visitor to another planet. Is it just because I move slower these days that everything else appears to be moving at warp speed? I hate to be one of those seniors that longs for the good-ole-days but the good ole days did feel pretty good.