Changing Focus Blogging Challenge: Memories

“Without memory, there is no culture. Without memory, there would be no civilization, no society, no future.” – Elie Wiesel

Spectators watching USA military float on Decoration Day in the 1940's

Tomorrow, May 31st, is Memorial Day. Traditionally, this holiday is for the United States to honor and mourn its military personnel who died while serving in its Armed Forces.

Perhaps this year, more than any other, I feel emotional about this day as I mourn the goodwill I’ve known throughout America, and see the unraveling of our nation and military. I wonder how the deceased service members would feel to see Lady Liberty under siege today.

“Sometimes you will never know the value of something, until it becomes a memory.” – Dr. Seuss

I pray Dr. Seuss’ quote does not come to fruition for America as a country (or any sovereign nation). Once Communism destroys a nation, there is no turning back. There will be no America except in distant memory and all of our soldiers would have died for nothing — except perhaps a period of independence that subsequent generations too easily gave up.

Remembering all service personnel who courageously fought for our freedom brings back memories of fonder times. Of course, that’s pre-ccp/covid. And even before then…somewhere long, long ago…in the age of childhood innocence (and when all photos were black and white).

My Dad and his brother, a sailor and a marine (in the feature photo) both proudly served in the Pacific during WWII.

USA military ship in the sea
1944 card for a sailor

The Power of Memory
I never got to know my Dad in my adult life. By the time I moved back from living in a distant city, he no longer knew me. Or himself. He survived the war but dementia became his captor.

One of my earliest memories of my Dad is him pruning the row of glowing forsythia bordering our house. Like me, he thrived in the outdoors. Many times while pruning my own shrubs I think of him and how wonderful it would have been to work side by side…

But, with all of my immediate family gone, Dr. Seuss’ quote is a reality for me. I am grateful for the memories (and photos) I do have but miss the comfort of family, and particularly in challenging times.

Nurse Holding Baby in 1940's
Nurse holding my newborn big sister that I never knew…
1940's baby in stroller
…she died at 18 months
1940's women working in garden
Aunt and Mom working in the garden

Cow approaching a child
My big brother as a tot…passed away 18 months ago

The Pleasantries of Memories
Do memories offer you comfort? Is there anything from your past that you remember fondly? If you could, would you bring it back today?

25 Pleasant Things I Remember

  1. The horizon was unobstructed by cell towers and wind mills
  2. Handwritten cards and letters arrived in the mail
  3. Businesses were closed on Sundays
  4. Food was wholesome without preservatives, dyes, and unidentifiable words
  5. The smell of sun-dried laundry from the clothesline
  6. “Please,” “thank-you,” and “you’re welcome” were common words
  7. Fast food joints and packaged food didn’t exist
  8. Kids could attend school worry free of shootings
  9. Journalism offered more facts than opinions
  10. Friendly Mom and Pops owned neighborhood stores
  11. People didn’t air their dirty laundry in public
  12. Neighbors knew and helped each other
  13. Nursing homes were rare; grandparents lived out their days residing with family
  14. The seasons were true to the calendar
  15. People took personal responsibility
  16. Skies were clear and unpolluted; no chem trails in the air
  17. You could walk barefoot in the grass, play in the woods without worry of ticks or Lyme disease
  18. Sex, politics, religion, and sometimes money were not openly discussed
  19. Milk was delivered in glass bottles; plastics were rare
  20. You could safely answer the telephone and be happy to hear from a caller
  21. Time was unencumbered, without an urgent pace or frequent interruptions
  22. Job security and loyalty existed
  23. Parents could safely allow their kids to play outside til dark
  24. Tailor-made, quality clothing was readily available
  25. Americans were united in a patriotic love of country

“Always have old memories, and young hopes.” – Arsene Houssaye

If you have a photo, narrative or music of a cherished memory, please share it for this month’s blogging challenge. Pleasant memories, distant memories, childhood memories — however you wish to interpret, the choice is yours.

Changing Focus Blogging Challenge Badge Reminder
Changing Focus Blogging Challenge Details

Just add Changing Focus blogging challenge as a tag in your response (by June 26th) and provide the link to it in a comment on this post. Responses for “Memories” will be highlighted on this blog at the end of the monthly challenge.

God gave us our memories so that we might have roses in December.” – J.M. Barrie

Sweet memories of carefree days we thought would last forever…

8 Replies to “Changing Focus Blogging Challenge: Memories”

  1. Although each of us has a choice, albeit difficult when bombarded with consumerism and self-importance, to what we keep and what we discard, to what we value and what we don’t. Admittedly, being raised by parents who went through the Depression, I am still of the mindset to reuse a product rather than immediately discard. However, even with all the “talk” of saving the environment, how many consider that when replacing an old cell phone, printer, etc.? I believe younger generations are taught to discard rather than repair. For instance, I was shocked when someone explained that they threw out their printer because it was cheaper to buy a new one than replace the ink. Even more devastating, we see the numbers of elderly housed in “nursing homes” (a term I use very loosely because I think they are horrid places) rather than lovingly be cared for by family.

    Like

  2. You’re very welcome WG. Yes it’s become a disposable society, they produce junk so it has to be replaced. We also rarely mend things anymore, we’ve lost the value/appreciation of things. Shallow personalities with no depth is what they want people to be. Sad.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Thank you for taking the time to offer such a thoughtful and personal reply. I often wonder, as you do, why they changed what wasn’t broken. Too many times they tell us that newer is better when it simply isn’t true; ironically most of the newer made things break much easier and sooner than the ones manufactured long ago that were made to last. Perhaps that is true of their character as well. Warm wishes to you dear friend —

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Beautiful post. Thank you for sharing your memories, I’m very comforted by nostalgia for the past. Why did they have to change what wasn’t broken? I miss the natural world. I especially loved seeing the photos of your family, I often feel like photographs and music are like time travel, they evoke many memories and thoughts.

    Liked by 1 person

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