On Cowboys, Anxiety, and Stress ...

It’s noontime on a Sunday in the fall of 1952.  My younger brother, Donnie, and I are eating lunch with Mom and Dad and waiting for “the verdict.”  Have we been well behaved all week?  Did we do all of our chores?  Did we finish our homework each night?  Finally, the answer is “Yes”, and we know we can head off to a neighbor’s house later that day.  Why?  Well, they have a brand new black and white 13” TV – the first in the neighborhood.  And they have said we could come to watch Super Circus at 5:00, and then Hopalong Cassidy and his horse Topper at 6:00 o’clock – if we had our parents’ permission.   That weekly event set off a lifelong interest in cowboy westerns that I still enjoy today.

So imagine my excitement when Layna began scheduling series like Roy Rogers, the Lone Ranger, and Bonanza on a regular basis on 971 during this COVID pandemic!  Friends have laughingly said they check the 971 schedule for these programs and know that they shouldn’t call me during that time.

Fast forward to the recent presentation on “Surviving and Thriving during COVID-19” by Dr. Lenny Echterling from JMU.  One of his points was remembering activities from childhood and youth that brought joy and would become positive triggers for us now.  That immediately brought to mind the enjoyment I’m currently getting by watching the Lone Ranger.  You can see Dr. Echterling’s entire presentation on Res Apps/ Funside Activity Newsletter.  Just click here. 

The very next day, Tom Harkins forwarded to me a very insightful article from WIRED, “How to Deal with the Anxiety of Uncertainty.”  Again, one of the points in this article encourages you to Binge Watch Your Favorite Childhood Show, stating “While you don’t want to waste time worrying about the past, taking a little trip down memory lane can do wonders for your mental health during periods of uncertainty.”  Click here to read this very helpful article.

So now I have just one or two requests of Layna:  I’m still waiting for Hopalong Cassidy ... and maybe Gene Autry?

--by Linda Bradley