I’m sure we all grew up having our parents tell us how good we have it compared to how they grew up.
Neither of my parents had a television set until they were of preteen age and then it was only 1 or 2 channels depending on the weather.
My father grew up in a house with no indoor plumbing.
My mom, well my mom actually didn’t have a lot to complain about. Her parents owned the general store in town. I often refer to my mom as Nellie Oleson (from Little House on the Prairie). My mom brought a bottle of Coca-Cola and a candy bar to school everyday for her lunch. Her Dad drove her to school and they had indoor plumbing! Still, she was born in the 1940’s and the world wasn’t equipped with the luxuries my generation had.
Soon, I too will take the right of passage of every parent, and begin to bestow unto my children the stories of how good they truly have it compared to what I had to deal with growing up.
Take for instance, the rotary phone, stuck to wall no less! I can barely have a conversation on the phone now with a cellphone. I can’t imagine being tethered to the wall! My children will have no idea how much better their teenage years will be, compared to what mine were!
I began typing at 6 years old and used a typewriter all the way up to my senior year in high school. The horror of it all, thinking back on it now. The amount of time it took was unbelievable. I went through many bottles of white-out. My children will have no idea how much easier writing their essays for school will be, compared to what I went through.
I however had something my children may never have. This is the backyard I grew up with. This is where my parents still live. My children are growing up on a small lot in the city. From an early age I spent most of my days playing outside with the freedom to roam and run at my leisure. I had few playmates except for many pets. My sister and brother were much older than me so I was usually alone exploring and going on adventures through the woods.
There was 2 1/2 acres filled with fruit trees, pine trees, a field, vegetable gardens and an old shed. My imagination was a vital element in my everyday life. I don’t remember ever being bored.
So yes, in many respects my children will have an easier life than I, due to modern conveniences and technology. However, they may never have this piece of serenity that I knew. They may never know what it’s like to wake up with an adventure everyday, just outside your door.
This is the childhood I wish I could give them.