By Terry Allen
We all have stopped last month to remember the contributions and sacrifice of all of the men and women who defended the freedoms we hold close in our country. As I placed flowers on the tombstones of family members, I was motivated to make sure we turn and thank our own while they are alive! My grandmother, Lucille “Big Mama” Allen always said, “We need to give people their roses while they are alive instead of laying them on their casket after they are gone.”
She was right! During this mandatory time of pause, I almost yielded to the pressures to stay “busy” to be “virtually” hyperactive. I heard so many colleagues tweet, post, and say, “I am going to clean out my closet” “I am going to read those three books,” or “I am going to take a course online.” Well, did ya? No! Social isolation can force us to want to be busy rather than reflect and address our mental state of mind, dealing with the pandemic and all the controlled chaos that comes with it.
I did not get enough time to reflect on peace and stillness. I did take a look at my state of mind and decided that it is time to sometimes do nothing but be thankful for others who have taken a stand to keep us informed. Portions of our leadership have reawakened the dark side of many citizens in this country. So, I choose to be thankful. Research shows there are many benefits to being thankful, including feeling happier and lowering stress.
So clearly a spirit of thankfulness and appreciation is also essential! Here is my first list of people I am thankful for today: Cheryl Smith, I Messenger Publisher and veteran journalist who has assembled a host of talent to make sure the community-at-large receives news and information that is immediately essential – Shout out to our entire I Messenger Media L.L.C. News Team as well.
Dietary Manager, Rhonda Fuller Edwards and her team at Lindsay Park, a senior citizen home. Edwards fought, demanded, and practiced social distancing very early on as well as blocked family visits and closed the facility to group meals to ensure that they are COVID-19 free. Shout-out to the administrators at Lindsay Park and “Miss Rhonda!”
Tell me who you need to be thankful for! Share your gratitude with me! My next two columns will cover how we take control of our power during the pandemic and how-to social distance and support our small businesses. Words are powerful. We can use them to tell our stories and impact the community. Thanks, Cheryl.