April 4, 2012

The Ration Stamp – PUBLISHER’S CORNER

By Dee Deuth, CSA
Weerts Funeral Home

SPRING! It’s the time of renewal and the rebirth of nature. A time for warm breezes, the smell of newly turned earth, rain and the first brave flowers peeking through to greet the sunshine and you.

I recall the story my mother’s friend told of her experience in the spring of 1943 during World War II. Many of you probably remember that the citizens of the United States were given “ration booklets,” which contained stamps for certain items that were rationed due to lack of production or import for civilian use, due to the war. Some of these items were gas, sugar, coffee, tires and the list goes on.

Mom’s friend had a daughter about five years old. The little girl had outgrown her shoes, so they went shopping for new shoes the day before Easter Sunday. The youngster was excited to find a pair that she absolutely loved, and they fit her well. She walked around the shoe department with them on, happy at the thought of wearing them for Easter. As the mom went to the cashier to pay for them, she was asked for her ration stamp which was needed because the shoes had rubber soles. Sadly, she had no ration stamp available, so she had to explain to her daughter that they weren’t able to purchase the shoes that day. It was disappointing for both mother and daughter, to say the least! However, another customer standing nearby and observing the whole situation stepped up and said, “Here, use my stamp. I was going to buy some shoes, but I can wait awhile. Please use the stamp for your daughter’s shoes.”

What a story of caring for someone in a difficult situation. But that’s what life is about, isn’t it?

Today, we are fortunate that our items are not rationed as during that War. However, we don’t need to look far to see others who are less fortunate than we are; someone who can use just a little boost to get through the day. Maybe our “ration stamp” is a kind word, a “Good Morning,” a smile, opening the door for another, or taking the time to truly listen to that same story that he has related to us several times previously.

As we enjoy April and all the new life it brings, I trust we will renew our own spirits to bring that freshness to someone else on a daily basis. It takes so little on our part, and it can mean so very much to the recipient. It takes fewer facial muscles to smile than to frown, and it is a much more pleasant experience. Best of all, what you share will come back to bless you in return!

All of us at 50+ Lifestyles Magazine wish you a very Happy Spring!