I saw this picture in an antique store while shopping with a friend. Our first thoughts was, “What happened to this America?” Besides the bad haircuts and dated clothing, these children look like they make up one big happy family. This photo captures a moment in time. It was a moment when children were unaware of the internet, texting, downloading movies and music, microwaves and instagram. They didn’t have play dates or test scores to achieve, they didn’t have an activity every day after school or a schedule to keep. Families ate dinner together at a dinner table. These children grew up in a house where there may or may not have been a telephone, maybe no tv, and an ice box was the precursor to a refrigerator. Communication was done face to face and on an everyday basis.
It was definitely a different time for families. We talk about all this as ‘the good old days’. We talk about how things were better back then, and yet what do we really mean by that? Were things better because they were more simple? Were they better because families had different priorities? Were they better because technology did not fog our thoughts or overinform our minds? Or were they better because we only see the simple things and forget the hardship? Were they better because people tell us they were better, when they compare it to our current state?
When we look back at the past we all too often only remember the good portions and forget the more difficult times. We remember what we want and forget the pain. That can be a very good thing, and yet it taints our view. We then compare our memories to our current reality. We see what we want instead of seeing reality. So what is reality? Is it what we see or what we make? Is it what we remember or what really happened? There are three sides to every story…your side, my side, and what really happened. And when we compare our current life to the life of the past, we only see one side of things…the other two sides get forgotten. And that isn’t reality at all.
Look at your reality today as it REALLY is, not what you compare it to from the past. The ‘good old days’ are gone. You have the opportunity to make your current reality the best world possible. You have the choice to make things better one day at a time. You have the chance to make today better than any good old days. What you do today will be the good old days ofyour future…so make them worth remembering.