Saturday, November 7, 2009

When I Was A Kid

When I was a kid, we listened records. When I was a kid, we washed dishes by hand. When I was a kid, we didn't have gears on bikes. When I was a kid, we had black and white TV sets. When I was a kid, we typed on a manual typewriter. When I was a kid, we made carbon copies. When I was a kid, penicillin saved my life. When I was a kid, we moved all over the car when it was moving. When I was a kid, the iron lung was used for polio patients. When I was a kid, we had an outhouse. When I was a kid, we made our own soap. When I was a kid, we bathed in a wash tub. When I was a kid, we hung clothes to dry on a line. When I was a kid, we ate food from our garden. When I was a kid.....

When I was a kid, my cousin was stationed in the Philippines. When I was a kid, we lived with the cold war. When I was a kid, the Bay of Pigs happened. When I was a kid, JFK was murdered. When I was a kid, my classmates went to Viet Nam. When I was a kid, Khrushchev banged his shoe on a table. When I was a kid, there was an Iron Curtain. When I was a kid, the Manson's terrorized. When I was a kid, a man walked on the moon. When I was a kid, the first chimp circled the world in a space pod. When I was a kid, jets began to leave white vapor trails across the sky. When I was a kid, the Age of Aquarius dawned. When I was a kid.....

Last night the girls spent the night. I found myself saying, "When I was a kid...". After I crawled in to bed next to my snuggly granddaughter, the words started bouncing around in my brain. I cannot impart the depth of what happened "when I was a kid". I cannot take them through the fears, the tears, the awe, the excitement of a time that is past....my past. I can only remember.

Someday they will say, "When I was a kid, we had 9/11, wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, economic disaster, phones that do almost anything, electronic books, music from an IPOD and a black first family. Wow! Only 10 years.

I wish Mom and Dad would have told me more about their childhood years. I wish my family had shared more. My sisters and I now try to put the pieces together, but there is a void.

I can hear it now: "When I was a kid, my grammy wrote a couple of blogs. One was about when she was a kid."

1 comment:

  1. When I was a kid, girls didn't wear jeans or tennis shoes. When I was a kid, we played kickball and flashlight tag and hide-and-seek. I helped my mom hang clothes on the line. We sprinkled our shirts, blouses and pillowcases, rolled them into a plastic bag, and then took them out and ironed them. My sister and I recited poetry while we washed and dried the dishes. A transistor radio was the coolest gadget I'd ever seen, although the sound quality was atrocious.

    When I was a kid, I watched on TV as the Little Rock Nine were cursed at. I remember wondering why. The little black girls were dressed in blouses and skirts just like I wore. Their hair was neatly combed, and they hugged a big notebook to their chest, just like me. But soldiers had to escort them to school.

    When I was a kid, we had duck-and-cover drills where we had to get under our desks. There were rumors of neighbors building bomb shelters. Our Weekly Reader had a map of the world showing the latest "hot spots." I remember feeling despair that there was a new spot each week.

    When I was a kid, I worried a lot about what things would be like when I grew up. Now I worry about the world my grandchildren will live in. Some things never really change.

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