I finally figured out why we as women of a certain age won’t social distance, stay at home, or wear a mask. It was easy once I thought of it. We are the generation whose parents didn’t tell us about the dangers of life–at least for the most part. I know there was the polio vaccine, but day to day things were left up to us. We grew up hearing the phrase “you’ll be okay”.
We were the generation that grew up without seatbelts. You remember how four or five kids would be sitting in the back seat with the window rolled down, and if they were lucky enough to sit by the window, they would ride with their arm dangling out. And then there was a mom in the front seat holding the baby in her lap. We would sit on our knees and look out the rear window, and wait for our dad to go fast and over and down so that we could be thrown in the air, not realizing the danger.
Then there was the pickup truck. Remember sitting in the bed of the truck with your brother, uncle, or some other male racing down the street–not the highway, but usually some country road. Where every time they hit a bump, you would be thrown as high or higher than the top of the cab. Shoot, I remember sitting on the side of the cab, and the boys standing on the side as we raced along the country roads. Who knew this was dangerous?
I know we all remember when the station wagon was a car to have, and we would fight to get in the back so we could play. We would laugh and have so much fun as the driver turned the corner sharply so that we would be thrown around–it was fun. We never thought about danger, and it kept us from fighting about where to sit in the backseat.
In our teen years–well we’ll let that go, but you remember sitting all up under your boyfriend as he drove you around town–no seatbelt. It was love, not danger.
Then there were those cold mornings when we got ready for school, and we backed up to the heater in our pajamas (gowns) to get warm. I do remember a child’s gown catching on fire, but parents then told us to be careful and not get too close.
We rode bicycles with no helmets, and sometimes no brakes. We put younger, smaller kids on the back and sometimes the handlebars. We had no fear. We ate fish and got the bone caught in our throat–no one went to the doctor, your parents gave you white bread to eat, and when you swallowed it moved the bone down-because “you’d be okay”.
In the country, we burned trash and watched how pretty the colors of the flames were. I did get burned–again no doctor visit.
I think my favorite was when they sprayed for mosquitoes. The kids would run behind the truck and inhale the pesticides, and for the life of me, I don’t remember anyone dying from it. I can’t remember parents telling you not to run behind the mosquito truck. If they did, no one listened.
It’s our parents’ fault. They made us think we were invincible, that nothing could harm or kill us. They constantly told us that we would be okay, and we believed them.
These are just a few tongue in cheek things that I remember as a child. Our parents did teach us about the dangers of life as they were when we were growing up. Times were different.
The one thing that we forgot that our parents taught us was that we should wash our hands, cover our mouths when we sneeze or cough and be kind and considerate of others.
So since we don’t believe that fat meat is greasy (East Texas saying), let’s be kind to others by social distancing and wearing a mask. We want to be around to make our children and grandchildren think they are never in danger. Remember “thisisyourbestyear”. For all of my sisters that are complaining about lip color, let’s just coordinate our masks with our outfits. Take a look at one of my favorite scenes in a movie. As the late John Witherspoon would say “you’ve got to coordinate”. Start a new trend.
Be Safe! We know how to take care of our families, ourselves, others, and still, look good. Just coordinate.