Down the Lane: Welcoming a brand new year, revisiting 2018

Published 10:13 am Thursday, January 3, 2019

As I write this column, we are nearing the end of 2018, and as you are reading it, we are celebrating the start of a new year.

I want to wish each of you a happy New Year and hope it will be a blessed one for you.

I enjoy reading the newspaper at the end of each year and revisiting the events of the past year. You forget what made the news that was so big at the time.

It also always amazes me how many famous people who pass away within just a year’s time.

Even though I believe every person on earth has a unique story of their own, there is one death in 2018 that sticks out to me. In February 2018, we lost the Rev. Billy Graham, he is someone I most admired.

To me, he did more for the world than any human on earth. His main purpose in life was for people to accept the Lord as their personal savior. He spent his life spreading this message across the U.S. and into the utmost parts of the earth as the Bible has told all of us to do.

I believe there should be a street named in his honor in every town in America.

Another person whose death touched me was Kate Spade. She was the fashion designer whose pocketbooks became a sought after item by many young women. Spade is thought to have died by suicide at 55 years old. Her death proves that money and fame do not buy happiness.

Our former president George H.W. Bush who had attended his wife, Barbara’s funeral in April soon followed her in death in November. Both of them had touched many lives.

My brother Robert, who left this earth in July, left a hole in my siblings’ and my heart. I am not sure if it was because he was the first of us to go, but I am still having a hard time with his death.

I can’t help  but think of all the lives we touch in our lifetimes.

Many people pass through our lives, it makes me wonder what impression we will leave on others.

At the end of year, it is hard for me not to look back over the last year.

I definitely did not do all the things I wanted to do or had aspirations to do last year. I guess no one truly ever gets done all they intended to do in life.

My goal this year is to have a children’s book published. I had planned to be farther along on it than I am but hopefully I will get that accomplished in 2019. It is in my head it just has to be put in book form instead of on scraps of paper here and there.

Something I did accomplish last year that I want to do again this year is to read my Bible through once more. I have found I am understanding it better now that I have been going to the Community Bible Studies Thursday mornings at Grace Baptist Church. The good thing about the Bible Study is it makes you study the Bible through homework. You then do a discussion with a group of ladies who may have a different interpretation than you do of the lesson and you can glean from one another.

I have found it has helped me so much and I am enjoying reading the Bible more because I am understanding it more. The meeting starts back Jan. 10 if any ladies would like to attend.

What kind of plans do you have for the new year? If it is something you have been procrastinating doing maybe it is this year you will get it accomplished.

It could be a person you have been aiming to go see. I can not tell you how often I have thought of someone I wanted to go see and kept thinking I would go but put it off only to find out the person was too sick to visit or had passed on.

On the other hand, I did make some of the visits with people I cared for a lot who passed soon after and I have been so happy I had made that final visit.

I also think it is valuable for older generations write about their life to leave for a grandchild or even a niece or nephew. Nothing made me happier than to hear the stories from my mom’s childhood. I got to know and understand a lot about her through her stories.

I plan to make some memory boxes with pictures on them for some of my nieces and nephews and grandchildren this year. It will help me make sure the pictures I have accumulated through the years will go to the right people and not be thrown away.

I have been obsessed with taking photos since the 1960s. I remember hearing someone say they wish they had taken more pictures. I decided I would not be that person. I did just the opposite and took way too many pictures.

It has been fun looking back and bringing back memories. Some have brought laughter and some have brought tears. I enjoy looking back at pictures and laughing at how silly the clothes and hair-dos look to you now.

Looking back at photos can also be a revelation of how many people who meant so much to you have passed on. You realize those same people in some way influenced your life and left a lasting impression one way or the other.

I hope your memories have been good ones in 2018 and that 2019 will see you making even happier ones.

Sue Staton is a Clark County native who grew up in the Kiddville area. She is a wife, mother and grandmother who is active in her church, First United Methodist Church, and her homemakers group, Towne and Country Homemakers.