How Did We Survive?

I was sent this by a friend a while ago and we had the most interesting conversation about today’s children. I don’t know who the author actually is but it really got me thinking.

How Did We Survive?

According to today’s regulators and bureaucrats, those of us who were kids in the ‘40s,’50s, ’60s, 70s, or even the early ’80s, probably shouldn’t have survived.

Our baby cribs were covered with bright colored lead-based paint and we had no childproof lids on medicine bottles, doors, or cabinets, and rode our bikes without helmets. As children, we would ride in cars without seat-belts or airbags. Riding in the back of a pickup truck on a warm day was always a special treat. We drank water from the garden hose and not from a bottle. Horror! We ate cupcakes, bread and butter, drank soda pop with sugar in it, but we were never over weight because we were always outside playing. We shared one soft drink with four friends, from one bottle, and no one actually died from this.

We spent hours building go-carts out of scraps and then rode down hill, only to find out we forgot the brakes. After running into the bushes a few times, we learned how to solve the problem. We would leave home in the morning and play all day, as long as we were back when the streetlights came on. No one was able to reach us all day. No cell phones.

We did not have Playstations, Nintendo 64, X-boxes, or video games at all. No 99 channels on cable, video tapes, surround sound, personal cell phones, personal computers, or internet chat rooms. We had friends! We went outside and found them. We played dodge ball, and sometimes, the ball would really hurt. We fell out of trees, got cut, broke bones and teeth, and there were no lawsuits from these accidents. No one was to blame but us. Remember accidents?

We had fights and punched each other and got black and blue and learned to get over it. We made up games with sticks and tennis balls and ate worms, and although we were told it would happen, we did not put out any eyes nor did the worms live inside us forever. We rode bikes or walked to a friend’s house and knocked on the door, or rang the bell, or just walked in and started talking.

Little League had tryouts, and not everyone made the team. Those who didn’t had to learn to deal with disappointment. Some students weren’t as smart as others, so they failed a grade and were held back to repeat it. Tests were not adjusted for any reason.

Our actions were our own. Consequences were expected; there was no one to hide behind. The idea of a parent bailing us out if we broke a law was unheard of. They actually sided with the law.

This generation has produced some of the best risk-takers, problem solvers, and inventors ever. The past 50 years have been an explosion of innovation and new ideas. We had freedom, failure, success, and responsibility, and we learned how to deal with it all. And to all of you who are part of this generation-congratulations!


One thought on “How Did We Survive?

  1. So true, love it. Hopefully our generation can bring it back around and raise our kids to love playing imaginatively.

    I recently had a chat with a mom who swore up and down I’d become a hand-sanitizer carrying germ-phobe when I was a mom. I was like, “Ehhh, probably not.” And she just gave me that look and said, “Uh huh, you’ll see” – like I’m not smart about this yet. I kinda hope my kids eat dirt sometimes. LOL Those are real kids to me.

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