Wednesday, March 25, 2020


With all the anxiety in the world over this Covid 19 situation, it made me pause to reflect on the things that went on when I was a child.  There will always be trying times, it is our response to them that shows our character.

1. The Cuban Missile Crisis.    I do remember being scared to death over this crisis. We lived in Georgia and if the missiles came from Cuba, they might hit us. I remember the public announcements on television informing us of what to do in case of an attack. Shelters were available but not out in the country in North Georgia. I can remember one afternoon when my parents and their best friends were discussing building a shelter but their conclusion was, " Would we really want to live if every one else was gone?"  Again, no one seemed to worry about what all this talk was doing to children.

2.. Death of President Kennedy.   As children we literally saw footage of Lee Harvey Oswald, shooting the president in the head. And it was replayed over and over. I often wonder if the newspeople at that time wondered how that would affect children?  I do remember school was out and the only thing on our black and white television was coverage of the situation. I can't remember my parents saying much about it to us. They probably did but I do not remember.

3. Death of Martin Luther King Jr. Again we saw this right on Television. And we wondered who would be next. We did not have to wait long as Robert Kennedy was also assassinated. I was about 13 when this happened. In addition to all of this, the Viet Nam war was going on as well as coverage of the Manson Murders in Los Angeles.

4. The Gas Shortage. I was a teenage driver when the gas crisis hit and I remember putting three dollars worth of gas in to my parents car.  Everyone was worried about what would happen if we had no gas. That meant no driving to jobs, no truckers to bring supplies etc.

As I thought about these things, I was encouraged that we made it through those things and we will make it through this time as well. My parents had a strong faith in God and they passed this on to me. I love the Bible Verse, What Time I am Afraid, I will Trust in Thee. Psalm 56:3 KJV  It is a good one for right now!

And as for the people hoarding Toilet Paper. Oh my goodness....we did not even have an indoor bathroom until  I was in first grade.  My mother related that she did not even SEE any toilet paper until she went to school at age six.   As a little girl we would visit my great grandparents, Mama and Papa Swanson on occasional Sunday afternoons. I loved to to to their house because they had indoor plumbing. I always made it a point to go to the potty at their house.:)

Marvin and I stopped by the nearby Publix to pick up a few more groceries for this week. There was NO self rising flour or plain flour.  Now that is an emergency for me as I was planning on having my favorite comfort food, biscuits and gravy!! I do have some plain flour but I love White Lily Self Rising Flour for my biscuits. But as the song says, Country Folks Will Survive. I am a city girl now but I have those country roots.

We had a reminder that in the midst of this time, life goes on. People struggle and some lose dear ones. Some good friends of ours lost their 49 year old daughter unexpectedly yesterday. And they are faced with putting off a memorial service until people cane gather to mourn and remember sweet Pam.  It puts a lot of things in perspective. Pam was a vibrant single mom to two boys who are attending school at Auburn. She lived locally and cared for the needs of her parents. We first met them when we attended church with us when we first moved to Huntsville. In fact she was our first babysitter for the children when we would go out occasionally. She will be missed. I appreciate prayers for the Campbell family.


Ramblings of a Retired Lady said...

How well I remember those times too Arlene and we made it thru, so hopefully we will this time too. I was a city girl who married a country boy and learned many new ways to do things but I wouldnt trade it for anything. Have a good Wednesday.

Georgia said...

Hi Arlene, what a good blog post today. I remember, When Kennedy was shot I was in the 8th grade and I will never forget the name of my 8th grade English teacher and the look on her face when they announced he was killed. I was glued to the TV and I also watched Jack Ruby shoot Lee Harvey Oswald. Those memories stick with you.

I remember the gas ration, but I don't remember what year that happened.

I am a "country girl" who grew up in the city. My father and I both had a bent toward the country and would have loved to live out of town but my mother absolutely refused. And, the outhouse is the very reason. Her memories of growing up in the country were not the best. But thankfully we always had indoor plumbing.

Another memory...I remember going to the junior high school for a polio vaccine. We went as a family, and lined up with the community to get the oral vaccine. Polio was frightening.

I was going thru nursing school when AIDS was discovered (It is not even in my text books). I worked with nurses who refused to take care of aids patients, because, "they didn't want to put their family at risk."

Prayers to the Campbell family, that is heartbreaking. And please prayers to the caregivers, who are really putting themselves at risk and on the front line of this battle. What good is all the ventilators, and other equipment if you don't have staff to operate the machinery.

Thank you so much Arlene, for all you do:)

Sandy said...

So sorry to hear about the death of the young lady. That would be hard in this time and I feel for those that have parents in the nursing homes too.

Robin in Virginia said...

I remember most of the items you mentioned, Arlene. We survived through them and we will survive this. Prayers for the Campbell family as they mourn their loss.

Anonymous said...

Praying for the Campbell family. We have been through difficult times but nothing like this has every happened before. I wrote a bit about that today. I think courage is knowing what the battle is, choosing to fight it, and remaining hopeful in spite of the circumstances.

Rian said...

Yes, those of us who are up there in age have a lot of memories of difficult times. As a child I remember being so afraid of getting polio... seeing those people in iron lungs scared me to death. But my dad told me it didn't help to worry... in fact, if you worry about it too much, you'll probably get it. That worked! I then and now try not to dwell on things I have no control over.
So sorry to hear about your friend's daughter. I will certainly pray for her family.

Linda said...

I have been visiting with you over a cup of coffee catching up on all the posts I’ve missed! I read them like chapters in a book!
You are so right! We will get through this! Most of the time I’m doing okay but the constant news is really starting to get to me! Thank goodness Louis Dean turned it off and went in the guest room to take a nap!
I would love to run off to the country but we have so many repair jobs to do here and our AC is out so we are waiting on the man to fix that. It’s only a two hour drive and I don’t know if we are suppose to leave one Shelter in Place to go to another one. Last I heard there are 5 cases of the virus here in Irving. There are no cases in Falls county where the ranch is.....
When I don’t know what to do - I stay still.
Love and prayers for you and Marvin! I hope we get our bees next month!

Mary said...

Prayers and condolences to the Campbell family.

I have 3 more things to add to the list that upset me as a child. The brutal murder of Kitty Genovese in Queens, when she called for help and no one came to her aid. The first mass murder of the nurses by Richard Speck and my earliest memory was of the Ruby Bridges integrating the school in the South. I was going into kindergarten that year and didn't understand what was happening...I was terrified of going to school. I didn't understand it was because she was black and thought that you would be attacked going to school.

Preppy Empty Nester said...

Well said, Arlene. I think we are about the same age and remembered all the things you mentioned. So sorry to hear about your friends' daughter. Stay healthy!

Terri D said...

I certainly remember all of those things. This too will pass. God is in control.

Barbara said...

Arlene, I am so sorry for the loss of your friend. You are right. Life goes on and we lose some along the way. That is how it is.

Your blog post brought back a lot of memories for me. Your observations of what we saw on TV during those assassinations and such -- it was real.

But I share your faith in our Lord to get us through this. Hard as it may get to be, it's not the end of the story for those of us who know Jesus Christ as our personal Savior.

Visits With Mary said...

I remember all those events and we certainly did get through them all, just like we'll get through this. It's not always easy, but I don't remember ever being told life was easy. AND I remember my Granny's outhouse, that's all she had for many, many years.

Mari said...

I don't remember the first things you mentioned but I do remember the gas crisis. What a good idea to bring up things we've already been through, and as you said, God took care of us.
I was talking to a neighbor today who said her mom grew up in the Netherlands and lived through WWII and many epedemics. She is staying home, but she said the same thing - Good has always taken care of me.
Thankful for indoor plumbing!

Carol said...

We've sure been through lots of unsettling times (and for those of us here in Pennsylvania, I'll add Three Mile Island in 1979 to the list--very scary). So sad to hear about such a young woman leaving this earth... May she rest in peace and my memories of happier times comfort her parents.