THOSE WERE THE DAYS: “It is Still a Normal Life”

Those of us fortunate to have lived on this Earth counting not only in years but decades, have walked the gamut throughout those years; from happiness to sadness, and now hopefully, we try to guide those who will place their feet where ours once trod. We have watched with glee as our families grew from infants, to siblings, to adulthood; and yet many times, we were forced to lower our heads as each took their place among the angels.  We have witnessed wars, famine, hard times and good times; all the while, the clock never missed a beat. With each passing day we were making history, events that will be discussed and studied possibly one hundred years from now – the schools we attended, and how we were taught, industry continually evolving with the times. What governments ruled our country, the price of houses and cars, and who survived the strict scrutiny of careful buyers?                                                                

Newspapers reported on floods, tornados, hurricanes and massive fires, it seemed there was nothing but gloom and doom engulfing not only our great country but indeed, the world.    

But look around. See the glorious sun come up in the morning, the grass lush and green? Fruit trees laden with tasty morsels and gardens begging to be harvested. Soon the fields will be covered with pure, white snow and children’s laughter will fill the air as they slide down a slippery slope. Life isn’t beginning again, it never stopped. 

This past year tested each and every heart and mind, COVID 19 and the viruses that followed separated families, rushed people to hospitals and took the innocent without mercy. Schools closed, jobs were lost and businesses closed, could we, would we be able to once again live like we did a mere few months ago?                                                                                        

The sky hasn’t fallen. The world has not come to an end. In November we will be able to properly remember those who fell in battle protecting our freedoms. December will witness men and women of various faiths thanking their deity for all that we have taken for granted. Christians will worship a Babe in a Manger as they have for the past two thousand years. During WW II trees were rationed because of the dire need for pulp to make paper, but this Christmas the lights will shine. Children were unable to gather, but the magic of Santa is again inviting wide eyed believers to sit on his lap and whisper their coveted wish list. The aroma of turkeys roasting in the oven. The crackle of wrapping paper being ripped from colorful presents. Remembering the homeless, the hungry, those less fortunate than us. The warmth within our hearts when we hear ‘Oh Holy Night’ or ‘Come All Ye Faithful’.

No, we are not starting a new normal, over many decades we have suffered and survived every misery fate can throw at us, but we have always risen to our feet and stood tall as all have done before us. So, gather at a cenotaph in November, sing Christmas carols from the heart, decorate your Christmas tree, enjoy the merriment with Santa and bow your head at a Manger, to me, that is simply being normal.

From my house to yours, a very Merry Christmas and a Happy, Healthy New Year.

Russ Sanders