By: Dr. Jacquelyn Simmons
In last week’s article, this writer implored you not to force your young children to attend funerals due to possible lasting indescribable consequences.
As a very young child, my fears not only began as a result of being forced to attend funerals of persons known and unknown to me but due to my grandfather being pastor of our church, our entire family had to attend every activity held there. My fears were fed further by my personal choice to attend horror movies at one of the local theaters which was located across from a graveyard. In order to go to the theater, we had to walk between two graveyards.
In some of those very scary movies, one of the main characters was always lying in a black coffin, dressed in black clothing and wearing a menacing long black cape. As a large, black clock chimed midnight, the tall, slender black-haired character arose from the casket, a large meowing black cat with large yellowish green eyes always appeared during the exiting of the casket scene. Candles flickered brightly as the character left the building. Afterwards, he committed murders of various persons and hurriedly returned to his coffin.
As the huge yellowish-orange moon began to be covered by clouds and daylight began to emerge, the other main character (hero) always solved the murders, identified and killed the murderer who could only be destroyed with a silver bullet if the murderer was a vampire. If not, he killed him anyway after rescuing the heroine (girlfriend). In other horror movies, the villain always placed his victims in closets and when they were opened, the victim always fell outside the closet to the horror of the frightened heroine. I am still queasy about opening closet doors.
My worst death fears to date, occurred when this writer was about 8 years old. My grandmother took me to a home where a wake (family hour) was being held in a private home. This is where most wakes were held during those days. Due to the fact that most families did not have electricity, they burned candles and used kerosene lamps for lighting, also. They both emitted unpleasant odors and caused strange shadows to appear on the ceilings and walls. To add to my discomfiture was the smell of dying flowers supplied from home flower beds, perfumed and deodorized guests, who sometimes were sweating profusely, embalming fluid, and the decaying body, etc.
Due to the small size of the room, we not only were squeezed closely to each other, but very close to the deceased, also. Across the deceased face was placed a lace cloth in order to protect it from flies, cats, rats, and people, who maybe wanted a clearer view of the deceased. This writer was terrified, as you probably have noted by now. Lace still reminds me of it
Many years ago, a black and white movie depicted a lady who was wrongly forced to live in a insane asylum because everyone thought she was insane. Finally, a doctor actually listened to her and discovered that during her early childhood she had been forced to kiss a deceased female member. Need this writer say more?
Be careful about what your children are watching on cell phones, TV, computers, and movies in which they are attending. This may cause undue terror in their present lives and continue as adults. This writer is still suffering from things that occurred during my experience of the noted above.
P.S. Don’t forget to read Isaiah 3:1-4.