And I did like any kid, teenager and college student does. I rolled my eyes, snarled my nose and said something sarcastic.
But you know what? I knew they were right. I knew I had it easy compared to their lives as kids. I really did. I also knew that I didn’t have as much privilege and material things as many of my peers. I struggled with that a bit, but in my head, I knew I still had it good compared to many and especially compared to my parents.
I really didn’t think that there would be too much room for me to have these stories for my kids. Mainly because, I was going to demand many of the same things from my kids as my parents did from me with respect to responsibility, earning my keep, and helping/contributing to the family. But, I can already tell you, I can see how much more spoiled kids are these days than even we were as kids.
Here are some of the things I find myself thinking or saying comparing and contrasting my lifestyle as a kid to theirs. And YES, I realize these are ridiculous.
- When I was a baby, we were in an infant seat and car seat until we were 3. Then we crawled around the backseat like it was the cockpit of our private spaceship. I am still alive.
- When I was a kid, we had to arrange pick up and drop off places ahead of time. We had to have spare change on hand for an emergency PAY PHONE call just in case. We knew how to call collect if we needed to. All because this little thing called a cell phone did not exist.
- When I was a kid, we made it through an ENTIRE SOCCER game without a snack. We even made it all the way home until we could be met with a made from scratch dinner after WE set the table or until we could be met with a healthy snack. Also, we drank WATER, not Gatorade or PowerAde from a plastic bottle, no, WATER from this amazing thing called A THERMOS.
- When I was a kid, I did not get a Capri sun in my lunch every day. I was to drink the milk the school provided or I was to drink WATER (from a thermos).
- When I was a kid, when we waited for the bus, we actually LEFT OUR HOMES and went to the bus stop. We did not watch from our windows as the bus stopped every 3 houses waiting for poor over-sleeping, cold kids who refuse to wear a coat because they think it makes them look UNCOOL.
- When I was a kid, we actually RESPECTED and MINDED our teachers in school because if we got in trouble at school, we were going to get in bigger trouble at home unlike the kids of today whose parents are constantly making excuses for their children’s unacceptable behavior while undermining teachers’ diminishing authority.
- When I was a kid, McDonald’s was fun just because. Not just because it had a playland. Playlands did not exist.
- When I was a kid, eating out in general was a huge treat. We loved it because it was exciting and different. We behaved at restaurants, too, because WE WERE EXPECTED TO.
- When I was a kid, we went outside and played games we invented. We ran and chased and pretended. We didn’t have elaborate play-structures in our backyard and a third garage stall full of nothing but rarely touched children’s toys.
- When I was a kid, we watched TV at night with our families to wholesome shows that were not inappropriate for kids under the age of 15 to witness on 1 of 4 network channels. Cable did not exist until I was in late grade school. Even then, there was one kid channel for many years. We didn’t even have a remote control until I was in grade school. Oh yeah, when MTV first came out, they aired really cool things called MUSIC VIDEOS instead of brainwashing liberal media.
- When I was a kid, I started out listening to my music on this thing called VINYL until a new technology called CASSETTE took off. Then, when I was in college, I started using CD’s. We had BOOM BOXES and walkmans if we wanted to take our music with us and we didn’t hide behind earbuds when any social situation arose.
- When I was a kid, we did this amazing thing with our friends – we TALKED. We didn’t IM or text. If something was urgent, we TALKED WITH URGENCY instead of using all caps or extra exclamation points. We left messages on each other’s locker chalkboards, not on their facebook wall.
- When I was a kid, we kept score at our sporting events. We even had a running tally called STANDINGS and the winners were given trophies. Not every kid was given a trophy just because they participated. It did this great thing – it weeded out kids who really didn’t want to be playing and it made it MORE AFFORDABLE. Also it helped us learn at a very young age that sometimes life doesn’t go exactly the way you want it to no matter how hard you try, but you have to keep trying because maybe next time it will.
all images courtesy google images.