Those of us who enjoyed a childhood bereft of any major trauma often think back to those days with a wistful nostalgia. That was the time before you needed to worry about adult things like job security, paying the credit card bills, and financing a looming retirement.
We often forget that childhood has stresses of its own like schoolyard bullies and monsters under the bed. In fact, if you think about it, some children live in a shockingly macabre world of their own making. Looking back, this was my experience.
To note one example: the entrance of our church featured two planters of approximately six feet in length, one on each side of the entry staircase. For some reason, I believed for years that each planter concealed a corpse. Wiggle your finger an inch into that dark loam and you would feel the sickening texture of decaying flesh.
To this day, I haven’t a clue as to where that idea came from. Was that dark image borne of a mischievous whisper from another child? Or did it emerge ex nihilo from my own over-active imagination mulling the coffin-like shape of those planters?
I haven’t a clue. But I do know that for years I thought our church inexplicably featured two corpses at the entrance. From that perspective, the worries of adulthood aren’t that bad, after all.