Thursday, February 18, 2016

The Good Ol Days

I MISS THEM!!! Yep, I miss "the good ol days"! As much as I love the modern conveniences of life as we know it, I miss the days of my childhood.  I miss having one phone in a central location, "rabbit ears", the singing of the National Anthem at the end of the television broadcast day, no answering machines or cell phones. I miss that simpler time. The days before social media...ya know, when people thought you had money if you had an electric typewriter and that you were a millionaire if you had a computer at home! Yep, those days are the ones I miss!  Don't get me wrong...I LOVE reconnecting with friends and loved ones via Facebook and email but wasn't life just a little less harried "back in the day"? Sure, we were busy - out and about but if we were out and about we were untouchable to a degree. Anyone who needed us would have to wait until we got home to get us.  There wasn't a constant state of "connected-ness".

I'm forever watching "retro" television. It drives my tribe NUTS!!! My husband constantly ribs me about watching "old tv" and asking me why I want to watch those shows. I think it's because while I'm watching Match Game, The Carol Burnett Show, Gilligan's Island, All in the Family, et al I transported back to that simpler time...the good ol days. A time in my life when my biggest concern was passing an English test or wondering if my high school football team win that week. In reality, I think it mostly revolves around the fact that while I'm watching The Carol Burnett Show or Laverne and Shirley I'm transported (mentally at least) back to my childhood. Back to the days when my "original" family, my first family was intact and life was simple (for me at least)...a time when all three of us were all still on this big blue planet - present in the body. In my mind's eye, I can see my Dad standing at the stove shaking that big stock pot with oil, salt and kernels in the bottom to make popcorn. No microwave or air poppers back then. I can see my Mom laying on the floor in the den with her "husband" pillow; blanket thrown over the vent in the floor to capture all the heat blowing up from the oil furnace. I can see (and sometimes even smell) the live Christmas tree we had every Christmas with the big multi-colored bulbs and the silver tinsel topped with snow from a can. I can see it and smell it and it makes me smile and ache all that same time. It's weird because I'm so blessed and happy in the present...but sometimes I just long for a few moments of the "old days".

I hope that at some point my children, when they are grown and living on their own, they will look back at this time in their lives, their childhood, with the same fondness that I have when I look back on mine. I hope that they see their dad and me "doing" and "being" and I pray it makes them smile.

I think after you release a parent into eternity, the "old days" take on new meaning. As an adult, I've always cherished my childhood and the days at home with my folks. I didn't cherish them while they were happening...I was too busy growing up and too young to realize how absolutely magical those moments, days, weeks, months, years really were - how I wish I'd known!!! I'd have made a point to soak up every hug, smile, laugh, joke and yes even the moments of being disciplined (Yes, even I had to be corrected and sometimes it even required a spanking!! SHOCKING, I know! LOL)

I encourage my children to soak up every moment and to be present in every moment because moments only happen once. It's hard for kids to be present in the moment...but I continue to encourage them to do it. There are so many things that I can only vaguely recall from my childhood and young adulthood...I know there was so much FUN but I can't remember the details. I often have people ask me, "Hey, do you remember when we..." or "Do you remember the time we..." and it makes me sad that I can't always say yes.

I really can't explain the ache or longing that sometimes creeps in but I do know that it brings a beautiful mixture of laughter and tears. Laughter because it all happened and tears because I'll never pass that way again. Make the most of every moment and BE ALL THERE!

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