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Is Your Community Antisocial?

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Recently I was going down what I call memory lane. I recalled the small town I grew up in and what our community was like. I grew up in the Midwest in a small town.   Around the age of five I remember clearly the population was 3000 since the sign stating population was on the street where I lived. Back then our town was known for its landscaping and agriculture. Workers from Mexico and Texas came to help the landscaping businesses each spring and summer so that businesses would survive.

In our satellite community where I lived there were 30 families bordering a river. Everyone shared much in common and all social barriers were dropped especially when we helped one another through difficult times. Challenging times meant the river flooding, tornadoes or in the winter being snowed in. And even though there was stress and tension everyone had the same trial, so we helped one another and stood by one another. It didn't matter what race we were, what gender we were or what our religion was. What mattered was we handled the crisis together. More people meant more hands to take care of a difficult situation. Collectively the group in the community put their energies together and helped one another until the help was no longer needed, until the common problem was solved. Even though those times were difficult they were engaging times and heartfelt times.

By the 1960s industry and commerce took a firm hold. Soon satellite communities disappeared, there were so many new people in our community it was hard to know everyone's name. I realize now that when our community was smaller and less populated our people were more apt to help one another, because they knew one another. It was an agricultural community made up of many farmers who had moved from their farms into town. And for a child it was a fun community and a safe community. As I think about it now I realize the more people moving into our community the more antisocial our parents directed us to be and others became as well. 

The beginning of being antisocial started when dad brought home a black-and-white television set. My sister and I were excited to be able to watch television. We would hurry to finish our homework on school nights so we could watch a funny program. Scary movies were on Saturday nights only and we would watch movies about Frankenstein, werewolves, the mummy or the invisible man. Our television times of escape were held to a minimum and is the policy I decided to continue with till this day.

I know when watching television I am not reaching out to others or communicating with others. So in essence it was pretty smart of my parents to limit the television watching time as it forced me to go out into the world, engage others and be more physical and active.

In my community today there are eight homes around mine and some of the neighbors are never seen. In talking with my one neighbor she mentioned she was going to plant an organic garden. My husband and I volunteered to help them with the garden and at the time for planting seeds we showed up ready to help. Another family came and helped as well and within 2 1/2 hours the garden was planted. We had such a good time in being social while we were planting our seeds. Everybody will be equally excited eating the vegetables at harvest time too. 

From planting the garden I started to think about what other social activities could be started in a community. I realize with so many people from so many different countries and cultures who move to our communities, it's time to reach out and meet them and help one another. It's not too late to start a community garden project. If you do something like this I think you will find it's more fun than you would ever have imagined, and it gets completed easily. Even pulling the weeds can be fun with others!

I think it's a perfect time for community to come together and help one another during the trying times we have on earth right now. Are you up for it? I know I am!

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It has been brought to our attention that Margaret is being portrayed as a psychic on $1.99 sites. These sites are doing so without Margaret's permission. Margaret has not claimed she is a psychic. - MW