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Adlen Robinson: Count your blessings during this difficult time
Adlen Robinson

How are you holding up? My hope and prayer is that all of you are well both mentally and physically. 

There is so much uncertainty out there and I totally understand why people are feeling anxious, stressed out and worried. I did something the other day that helped me in the mental department, so I wanted to share it with all of you.

I thought about our country and the entire world and how the only thing anybody can talk about is the coronavirus. I began writing down things in my life I am thankful for. Sounds simple, right? It is not as simple or as quick to do as you might think, but it is a valuable exercise.

I went way back to my childhood. My parents were far from perfect —just like I was and am a far-from-perfect parent. That being said, I have so many fond memories from my childhood. For much of my childhood, I grew up in the south.  

When my father was transferred to work in one of the trade towers in New York City, we moved to New Jersey for a few years. During those years, we had amazing adventures. We explored NYC extensively. 

We did all the usual touristy things and I still remember seeing my first Broadway show (“Fiddler on the Roof”) and attending Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus in Madison Square Garden. We also saw the Harlem Globe Trotters which was so much fun. 

I also made national television commercials in the city. I even got to make one with Jane Curtin before she was Jane Curtin of “Saturday Night Live” fame. 

We also explored the entire Northeast and learned so much about the history of the founding of our country, seeing key sites up close and personal.

We moved back to the south when I was 9 years old, and while settling into my new elementary school was difficult (can you say bullying?), I adjusted.

We had a boat and I have so many memories boating with my family on Lake Martin in Alabama. My three older brothers were all excellent water skiers — even my parents skied. 

I skied on two skies. I was pretty wobbly even at that. I was afraid to try skiing on one ski. One day, when I was just 11 years old, my brothers tossed me just one ski and told me it was time I tried. My parents were not in the boat with us and it was clear there would be no discussion about whether or not I would learn. It took several tries, but with their coaching, I got up on one ski. I was so proud of myself and relished their cheers.

We had lots of woods behind our home and I spent most days exploring them with my brother. We loved building boats and sailing them down the creek that flowed through the woods. Our dog, Jerry, and my faithful cat, Spartacus, accompanied us on those trips — always keeping a watchful eye on us.

 Of course penning memories and remembering blessings, I remembered meeting and falling in love with Paul. After our very first date, at an authentic Japanese restaurant, I knew he was the only man I ever wanted to be with. 

After a year and a half of dating, Paul proposed and of course I said yes. Six months later, we married in Atlanta. We moved to Forsyth County right away — that was in 1990 — when it was long distance to call Atlanta and Dominos didn’t deliver. We mainly moved here because we couldn’t afford a house in Atlanta and we found a cute little house on an acre here.

We started our family soon after marriage and had four babies in just under seven years. I have so many memories during those years. So many blessings, too many to count.

Lastly, I just want to say what a blessing our community is. So many caring and loving people live here. Over the years, I have made so many friends both through volunteering, working with non-profit groups and through my work with the FCN. I so hope readers will continue to support our local newspaper and the work they do keeping all of us informed.

Please take a few minutes to write down things you are grateful for and the many blessings in your life. When you are feeling anxious, get out your list and re-read them. Stay strong friends! 


South Forsyth resident Adlen Robinson is author of “Home Matters: The Guide to Organizing Your Life and Home.” Email her at adlen@adlenshomematters.com.