This ‘n’ That By Jack Swift Johnson County Historian

Education in Johnson County

If you read my column of the last two weeks about me as a student at Dewey Elementary School, you may wonder how we came from the way things were then to the modern schools of today.
As I was gathering information for my last two columns, one of the most interesting bits of information I came across was the fact that there had been 67 different schools in Johnson County. Many were two-room, two-teacher schools. When consolidation came about, not a few citizens were unhappy that consolidation was taking place. Some people felt that the schools should be in their own communities. But consolidation advanced and now students have modern well furnished, well staffed schools to learn in.
I didn’t plan it but I thought it was ironic that last week’s column ran in the annual Progress Edition of the Tomahawk. From my description of Dewey School then and the way schools are now shows a great deal of progress. Progress is shown in the school plants, the modern equipment, the qualification of teachers, and in many other ways as well. While it took many years for education to become available for everyone, Johnson County was progressive in the field of education. Thomas Jefferson once said, “If a nation expects to be ignorant and free, in a state of civilization, it expects what never was and never will be.”
Our founding fathers were men who valued education highly. Early on the citizens of Johnson County or what would become Johnson County were descendents of the hardy sturdy, fearless frontiersmen who marched westward to claim the American Dream.
In the early existence of Johnson County few children were enrolled in the schools. In 1839 (three years after Johnson County was established), there were 787 enrolled in school. In 1840 there were 736 enrolled. In 1842 there were 768. The enrollment jumped to 1,189 in 1848.
The first Johnson County public secondary school was opened February 1, 1908. The semester was three months. The opportunity to achieve an education increased in Johnson County over time with a few blips along the way. To enable some students to attend high school who lived in outlying areas, a dormitory was constructed on North Church Street.
History shows that Johnson County folks were education-minded and they wanted their children and youth to become an educated citizenry.

DeAnna Greer receives Governor’s Volunteer Stars award

DeAnna Greer, left, receives a plaque from Miss Tennessee, 2018, Christine Williamson, during the Annual Governor’s Volunteer Stars Awards ceremony held earlier this year in Franklin, Tennessee. Submitted photo

By Tamas Mondovics

Eleven years ago Governor Phil Bredesen of Tennessee developed the Governor’s Volunteer Stars Awards to recognize the most outstanding adult and youth volunteers in each county each year.
Earlier this year, DeAnna Greer and her family traveled to Franklin, TN to attend the Governor’s Volunteer Stars Awards Ceremony where she enjoyed the spotlight as one of the awards recipients.
Executive Director for Volunteer Tennessee, Jim Snell, opened the 11th Annual Awards ceremony as Jennifer Kraus with Nashville Channel 5, read each nomination and biography.
During the ceremony, Miss Tennessee, 2018, Christine Williamson, handed Greer her plaque as recognition of this special day.
“DeAnna has always had a passion for volunteering and community service,” her mom Kelly Greer said, adding that after losing a very close friend to cancer, DeAnna wanted to make a change in her community and developed S.T.O.P. and Serve which stand for “Serving to Teach Others Passion.”
“This platform was created to teach individuals the importance of volunteerism and community service,” DeAnna said.
So far, DeAnna has accumulated more than 1,000 hours of community service and helped raise $7,000 for Relay for Life to benefit the cancer survivor fund in East Tennessee.
She also volunteers for the Haven of Mercy Mission Homeless Shelter, Serving with Style, Samaritan’s Purse Operation Christmas Child, Relay for Life, the Santa Train, Jurnee’s Journey Foundation, and Tim Tebow’s “Night to Shine” Prom for
individuals with special needs.
Congratulations DeAnna.

Vintage photos cause quite a stir

This photo, which was taken from well-preserved Kodachrome slides and put in Adobe Photo was taken from where The Tomahawk office is located today on North Church Street. Photos by Dan Reece

By Jill Penley

Back before cell phones, social media “selfies,” and digital cameras, one might easily recognize a professional photographer. Perhaps an individual was always toting around a large, cumbersome camera or maybe spending a lot of time in a dark room developing photos. These labors, in some instances, provide our only glimpse to the past.
When Harry “Bud” Reece decided to share some of his late father’s photography on social media, he wasn’t prepared for the public’s reaction. “People are enjoying reliving the past through the photos,” said Reece, who says his father left “boxes and boxes” of photographs and negatives. The shared photos include the old Johnson County High School, which is now the Johnson County Offices, the former Fire station and Library on Donnelly Street and the Masonic Hall.

Dan Reece old school “selfie,” which son, Bud Reece explains was done by photographing oneself in a mirror.

Dan Reece, Bud’s father, was a man of many talents including being a photographer extraordinaire. “He was basically a jack of all trades,” said Reece, who advises his father was an electrician in addition to his photography. “At one time, he had a studio and appliance store on Church Street,” Reece states as he recalls his father moving the business to a basement space of the former Blackburn’s Supermarket, a historical icon of Johnson County. The market used to operate near Food Country, which is prominent in many of the photos the elder Reece made of the downtown area of Mountain City.

Fire station and Library on Donnelly Street. Across
the street from the current city fire station near City Hall. Reportedly, Many fondly remember Lil Greer
as the librarian.

Other buildings and landmarks in the photos, presumably shot sometime in the 1950s, may look somewhat familiar such as the “old fairgrounds,” where the famous bean festivals brought in huge crowds. If “fairground” sounds familiar, it is probably because it is the current site of Johnson County High School campus.
Vintage photos capture the lives and happenings of yesteryear. “With a photo, you can capture a moment,” said Reece, “and have it forever.”

New business ventures spring up

Ribbon cutting at Mountain View Nursery and Landscaping Home and Garden Center new retail location on U.S. Route 421, next to the Garden Barn. Back, left, Ricky Hansen, Cody Graybeal, Holly Rominger, Maureen Burniston, Harvy Burniston; Middle, left, Nate Meyer, Jesse Compton, John Kidd; Front, left, Josena Aiello, Logan Church, Tony Church, Addie Henderson. Photo by Rita Hewett

You’ve got this! Licensed counselor Tracy Becker answers your questions.

Michael asks: How do I know if someone is depressed?

Great question, Michael, as we often overlook symptoms. Thus, I will go over each clinical symptom of depression for you and our readers.

Moods
Anxiety, irrational fears, apathy, guilt, hopelessness, loss of interests, shame, decrease in fun activities and increase in sadness.

Sleeping issues
Sleep issues are also a major part of depression. Waking early, excessive sleepiness, insomnia in all its forms and restless sleep. i.e., waking tired, napping.

Physical symptoms
Physical symptoms can be excessive hunger or loss of appetite – resulting in weight gain or loss, fatigue, restlessness, unaccounted for aches and pains to include headaches and/or digestion issues triggered by thoughts or feelings, decrease in exercise and/or physical strength. Self-harming activities. Loss of desire to shower, dress and take care of one’s appearance.

Emotional changes
Emotional changes can include agitation, anger, rages, irritable, excessive crying spells and a desire to isolate.

Mental cues
Mental cues are an inability to concentrate, loss of focus, loss of memory, slow to get things done or get motivated and not wanting to wake-up in the mornings. Ruminating on a single thought with a seeming inability to let it go.

Addictions
Addictions, if the person has a history with them will likely increase be it drugs, alcohol, gambling, etc. Addictions come in many forms.

Suicidal thoughts
Suicidal thoughts must be attending to by a professional immediately. In addition, if they have a plan and a means to carry out the plan call the police, an ambulance or to take the person to the nearest emergency room instantly.

The age range for suicides is highest for people between 45-54. A very close second is 85 years old and over. However, do not underestimate the younger community. If you know anyone who is consistently experiencing a combination of these symptoms for 2 weeks or more, it is recommended that you assist them in getting professional help.

Resources
Safe Haven Hotline: 423-727-1914; Suicide Lifeline: 1-800-928-8255 (TALK); Crisis Response: 1-877-928-9062; Crisis Center Bristol: 276-466-5246

Letter to the editor

Dear Editor,

It seems that Mr. Parson’s feels he is innocent of charges leveled by the Johnson County Sheriffs Office.
I have always been taught to respect the law enforcement community as they are the ones that place their lives on the line defending the citizens, this includes Mountain City and Johnson County.
From what I gather from the article in the Tomahawk, January 16, 2019 edition, it seems that after many requests from the Deputy and the Sheriff of Johnson County, Mr. Parsons continued to deny the name of the person present in his vehicle only that he was a friend. When Mr. Parsons refused to answer, the officer then asked the “friend” his name twice and the “friend” would not respond.
Now it seems that the Sheriff, Mr. Tester, arrives and asks Mr. Parsons if the passenger (friend) was his brother in law Mr. Parsons stated “I don’t know, I’m not at liberty to say that.” I wonder why Mr. Parsons was not at liberty to say who his passenger was other than to cover up that his passenger had active warrants for failure to pay child support (what about the child) again that “I don’t know”. Finally stating that “it’s my brother in law, yes.”
I believe this whole unpleasant event could have been averted if Mr. Parsons had been truthful and honest with the officers. I believe Mr. Parsons, feels Mountain City and Johnson County citizens should be open with one another in support of the law enforcement community.
It is those law enforcement officers that respond to the same incidents, day in and day out, sometimes with repeat offenders. This officer was only doing his job of following the law as the political process mandated in making the laws dictated. I believe that this incident should teach us all a lesson of showing respect to one another and be resolved amicably between Sheriff Tester, the Deputy and Mr. Parsons and the judiciary court system.
Let’s endeavor to put positive thoughts and lessons learned toward improving Mountain City and Johnson County without putting a bad light on our community.

George A. Spreyne

This ‘n’ That, Jack Swift

Dewey School Continued

My last column was a trip down memory land as I mentioned some of the interesting facts about Dewey Elementary School that I attended from grade one through grade eight. Dewey School was typical of the many schools that dotted the countryside in the early days of Johnson County’s attempts to educate its children and youth. It was a two-teacher school with one of the teachers acting as principal who also taught grades five through eight. The other teacher taught grades one through four.
I remember most, if not all, of my elementary school teachers. I was blessed to have John A. Shoun, Mark Reece, R. Clyde Wilson and a Mrs. Robinson as my fifth through eighth grade teachers. A long-time teacher for the lower grades at Dewey was Mrs. Rena Shoun. I’m sure many of the readers of this column will remember her. Mrs. Alta Loyd was also one of my teachers. She was the only teacher that I remember that gave me several smacks with a ruler on the palm of my hand for a minor infraction. Back then there was a 30-minute break for lunch. There was a 15-minute break in the morning and a 15-minute break in the afternoon. Of course we students looked forward to those times of fun and games. I remember how excited we were when Ray Shoun and another gentleman came and erected two basketball goals in a level area in a corner of the school grounds.
After the hot lunch program was started, the meals were prepared in a small kitchen that was a part of the building. Lunch was served at the students’ desks. I believe the desks are popular collector’s items these days. The lower part of the desks was used to store books. Of course, there was a place to sit. The writing board had a place for pens and pencils. There was an inkwell on each desk. For why, I do not know. The era of the quill and fountain pen had long passed.
Anyway, Dewey Elementary School was typical of the type of schools that made up the educational system of Johnson County during my grade school days. As I mentioned in the beginning of this column, now, we have the beautiful buildings that came about as a result of consolidation.

2019 Statewide Spring Turkey Hunting Season Opens March 30

Staff Report

NASHVILLE — Tennessee’s 2019 spring turkey season opens in all 95 counties on Saturday, March 30 and continues through Sunday, May 13.
“Turkey hunting in Tennessee is fantastic,” said Ed Carter, the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency’s executive director. “We have abundant public land, one of the longest seasons in the southeast and one of the biggest bag limits and plenty of turkeys. It’s a great way to experience the outdoors, especially this time of year.”
Spring turkey harvest numbers have been consistent for years in Tennessee.
And this year is looking to be even better than last year with more favorable conditions than last spring when harvest numbers slipped below 30,000 for the first time in 16 seasons. Bag limit is one bearded turkey per day, up to four per season.
A hunting and fishing combination (Type 001), plus a supplemental big game license, or a sportsman license is required. Don’t forget to check game when you harvest a gobbler.
Turkey harvest can be checked online at GoOutdoorsTennessee.com or through the TWRA On The Go App (report capable with or without cell service).
The Middle Tennessee area is again expected to be a hot spot. Nine out of the top 10 county harvests came from mid-state.
Maury County led the way though East Tennessee’s Greene County had a productive year finishing second overall in the state. Dickson County was third.
Hunting hours are 30 minutes prior to legal sunrise until legal sunset (times found based on your location in the TWRA On the Go app). Legal hunting equipment includes shotguns using ammunition loaded with No. 4 shot or smaller, longbows, recurve bows, compound bows, and crossbows. Firearms and archery equipment may have
sighting devices except those devices utilizing an artificial light capable of locating wildlife.
More information on the 2019 spring turkey season can be found in the 2018-19 Tennessee Hunting &
Trapping Guide. The guide is online at www.tnwildlife.org and from local agents.

Can Frogs Adapt To Traffic Noise?

Laura Reinert, left, Louise Rollins-Smith, PhD, and colleagues are studying how frogs adapt to harmful traffic noise. Photo by Anne Rayner

Submitted by Craig Boerner

Frogs don’t like living near noisy highways any better than people do, but research from Vanderbilt suggests that frogs, like hardened city-dwellers, can learn to adapt to the constant din of rumbling trucks, rolling tires and honking horns. And, just like those urbanites who can’t get a good night’s sleep without the sporadic sounds of sirens, some frogs have grown accustomed to the rattle and hum of the highway.
“The broad interpretation is that frogs adapted to noise are better able to cope with noise,” said Vanderbilt professor Louise Rollins-Smith, PhD, who conducted the research in collaboration with Penn State and three other institutions. “It suggests that these populations that are exposed to noise from the time of road building, which is 1940s, 1960s onward, have actually kind of evolved to accept these kinds of noise conditions.”
Published in Proceedings of the Royal Society B, the study suggests that traffic noise is harmful to frogs, yet frogs can adapt.
To accomplish the study, researchers collected eggs of the wood frog Rana sylvatica from ponds in quiet locations and noisy locations, such as near major highways. Back in the laboratory, the eggs were allowed to hatch and undergo metamorphosis, and then the frogs were split into groups and exposed to a recording of either ambient noise or traffic noise for eight days.
“The main thrust of this,” said Rollins-Smith, “is that the ones from quiet places actually were stressed by the [traffic] noise and the ones that came from noisy places were not so much bothered.”
One of the findings was that traffic noise reduced the ability of frogs originally from quiet ponds to produce the antimicrobial peptide (AMP) brevinin-1SY. AMPs are short proteins which confer protection against a wide range of threats, including viruses, bacteria, fungi and parasites. In frogs, AMPs are secreted from specialized glands in the skin. “Most species [of Rana] make quite a number of them, and this [species] makes only one well defined and tested antimicrobial peptide,” said Rollins-Smith, a professor of Professor of Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology.
AMPs, like brevinin-1SY, inhibit Batrachochytrium dendrobatidis, an aquatic fungal pathogen that is associated with global amphibian declines. The fungal pathogen “enters through
the [frog] skin. And so, this layer of antimicrobial peptides in the mucus of the skin is one of the protective defenses,” Rollins-Smith said.
This finding suggests that traffic noise may contribute to global amphibian declines by reducing the ability of wood frogs to defend against infection.
Traffic noise also impacted frogs’ immune and stress responses. When frogs originally from quiet places were exposed to traffic noise, researchers saw an increase in the number of monocytes, a particular type of white blood cell. But for frogs from noisy places, it was ambient noise that caused an increase in the number of monocytes.
A similar trend was observed for a hormone that becomes elevated in response to stress. Rollins-Smith said, “they were more accustomed to noise, so when it was too quiet, they responded differently.”

The work was supported by The Pennsylvania State University, Sigma Xi, the American Society for Ichthyology and Herpetology, and by the National Science Foundation.

You’ve got this! By Tracy Becker, licensed counselor answers your questions

Jessica asks: I feel unheard and unimportant to my mate. Is there anything I can do about this?

That is so unfortunate, Jessica, when we feel this way about our loved ones. This causes so much stress and strain in a marriage, or any loving relationship.

For this question I am going to quote one of the greatest relationship teachers of our time, Dr John Gottman of The Gottman Institute and University of Washington in Seattle. I promise you, whatever you want to know about good, sound and lasting love you can learn it from him and his team.

Nevertheless, here is a simple format to consider – ATTUNE, sometimes referred to as attunement. Awareness of your partner’s experience and feelings; Tolerance that there are two different and valid viewpoints for negative emotions; Turning Toward one another by recognizing your partner’s needs; Understanding, or attempting as best you can, to understand your partner’s experienced, and their perspectives;

Non-defensive listening means to listening to your partner’s perspective without concentrating on victimizing yourself or reversing the blame; Empathizing by responding to your partner with an understanding, awareness and sensitivity to their experience and needs.

I want to emphasize that all of these aspects of ATTUNE are skills. And, as in most things in life, if you are WILLING to LEARN and PRACTICE NEW SKILLS you can easily change your life and your relationship for the positive.

I would also like to say, Jessica, these are basic needs in developing a long-lasting loving relationship. They are also basic needs of respect, honor, love and communion. I would suggest that you invite your husband to read together some of Dr Gottman’s books, watch the multitude of videos on YouTube, attend one of his seminars together, or find a counselor in your area who has studied with him.

May you both find the love that you want and intended to create.

Please submit questions to tracy@tracybecker.com

You’ve got this! By Tracy Becker, Licensed Counselor

Roseanne Asks: How do I stop myself from having so many negative thoughts?

What a great question, Roseanne. This is something that plagues many people as it is a difficult task. Research says that we have approximately 65-85 thousand thoughts a day, thus making the it nearly impossible to assess what you’re thinking.

Knowing this, one of the best ways to stop the negative thought pattern, and create new thought patterns. There are a multitude of ways to do this, but I would suggest by starting simple by finding ways to relax – through laying down listening to relaxing music, specifically binaural tones (found on YouTube), with your earbuds so that you aren’t disturbed. You can also practice deep breathing exercises, meditation or listening to an inspiring and uplifting lecture.

Get out in nature away from your typical noises. Allow yourself to simply listening to the wind, the trees, water flowing you can clear your mind from the clutter. After a big rain you can go and scoop up a mason jar full of water out of the creek and attempt to look through the jar.

It will be difficult because the water has been stirred up by the rain it will be cloudy. But if you let it sit on the counter for some time the sediment will sink to the bottom and the water will be clear. This is what you want for your mind on a regular basis.

Engage in a hobby. When you put your brain power toward learning something new you get distracted from the things that bug you. We are thinking new thoughts and creating new patterns of thinking and creativity. Creativity and eager learning always soothes the mind.

Recommending reading
The Biology of Belief by Dr. Bruce Lipton; Words Can Change Your Brain by Dr Andrew Newberg

Please submit questions to tracy@tracybecker.com

You’ve got this! Mark Asks: I seriously lack motivation, what can I do to get back on track?

By Tracy Becker

Licensed Counselor

Hey Mark, it sounds like your get-up-and-go got-up-and-went. We all go through spells like this, but it doesn’t make it any easier. There are several ways to look at this.

One is that motivation can be associated with things you are supposed to do, ought to do, need to do or someone wants me to do.

Causing feel bad about ourselves, maybe get depression. In this regard, I invite you to switch motivation to inspiration. Inspiration meaning to be inspired, lifted up and excited by. If you allow inspiration to be your guide this will bring a whole new approach to what you take action on without shirking your responsibilities.

Another approach is to take a good hard look at your life and see what is weighting you down. List 100 things in your life that you are tolerating.

From the condition of your vehicle or home, your health, your job, your finances, or maybe even a close relationship that isn’t working too well for you. Take a couple of days to do this as it will bring about a lot of clarity on what’s bugging you that you haven’t been dealing with.

Next, circle all the things on your list you have no control over – things that are what they are. These are the things you will need to accept and let go of.

Lastly, you are left with the things you do have control over. With these create a plan. Start with the easy (so you’ll feel some success) and work your way to the more difficult. Chip away at this list the best you can.By following these two steps you can be well on your way.

Sheriff’s K9 Rico receives body armor

Johnson County’s bullet and stab protective vest recipient, Rico and his Handler, T.J. Brown pose for a photo in Mountain City. Rico received the protective gear from Vested Interest in K9s, Inc. a 501c(3) charity organization located in East Taunton, MA. The vest was donated to the Johnson County Sheriff’s Office in memory of K9 Josey of the Union County Sheriff’s Office, TN.” Submitted photo.

Plant trees on annual Tree Day

By Tamas Mondovics

Tennessee residents are invited to beautify their properties and their communities by planting trees on 250K Tree Day, scheduled for March 23, 2019.
According to officials, trees are now available to order for a $1 donation per tree, while supplies last through March 17, by visiting the event website at www.tectn.org/250KTreeDay.
This year’s event is organized by Tennessee Environmental Council (TEC) in its effort to maintain a healthy tree canopy in communities across Tennessee. Tree species include Red Oak, Red Bud, Pine and Plum or similar fruit variety.
TEC has planted over 540,000 trees since 2007 fulfilling the mission to educate and advocate for the conservation and improvement of Tennessee’s environment, communities, and public health.
“We are thrilled each year to be able to offer low-cost trees for the people of Tennessee to beautify their properties and participate in the largest community-tree-planting event in America,” said Jeffrey Barrie, Interim CEO for Tennessee Environmental Council, and one of the event organizers.
The event is sponsored by numerous funders and agencies, including the Memorial Foundation, the Lyndhurst Foundation, Cumberland River Compact, MTEMC’s Sharing Change, Bridgestone, Bass Pro Shops & TVA.
“This event typically draws tens of thousands of volunteers who plant their trees at their homes, farms, businesses, neighborhoods, and other locations of their choosing,” Barrie said.
Residents are urged to be sure to pick up their trees as ordered on the dates and locations published on the event website.

This ‘n’ That Happenings In The Year 1836

The year 1836 is of particu-lar interest to me because
it was the year Johnson County was carved out of Carter County to become the most northeastern county in Ten-nessee. Citizens of the area that became Johnson County had been plagued for years by the difficulty of traveling to Elizabethton, the county seat of Carter County, to conduct necessary business. In those days, travel was
grueling and time consum-ing. There were rivers to cross
and ridges to traverse. Johnson County was named for Thomas Johnson, a very respected and influential man of the area.
The county seat of Johnson County was laid out and lots were sold. Originally named Taylorsville to honor Carter County’s James P. Taylor. The name was changed from Taylorsville to Mountain City in 1885. Since the town was surrounded by beautiful mountains, it was a very ap-propriate name.
As I was thinking about 1836, I decided to try to find some other happenings in that year. It was in that year that the Battle of the Alamo in what is now San Antonio Texas was fought. After 13 days of fighting the Texas defenders were over-whelmed and the entire gar-rison was killed. Two hun-dred fifty seven Texans were killed including Jim Bowie and Davy Crockett. Crocket, a Tennessee Congressman, had left for Texas following a disappointing loss in his final bid for Congress.
Andrew Jackson was presi-dent in 1836. He had been a popular and successful gen-eral prior to becoming a U.S. president. He served as president from 1829 to 1837. Englishman Charles Dickens, the famous author of the Victorian Era, was born February 7, 1812. Fol-lowing his marriage in 1836, he became a prolific writer with such works as David Copperfield, Great Expecta-tions and other novels. He was also the author of a number of short stories. One famous person who married in 1836 was famous writer Harriet Beecher to Calvin Stowe in Cincinnati, Ohio on January 6. On May 16 Edgar Allan Poe married his cousin Virginia Clemm. Eng-lish novelist William Makepeace Thackeray mar-ried Isabella Gethin Shawe.
Among the deaths in 1836 were Betsy Ross (1752 – 1836), Aaron Burr (1756 – 1836 and as mentioned ear-lier Davy Crockett (1786 – 1836). James Madison, who died in 1836, served as U. S. President from 1809 to1817. The Texas Capital City, Aus-tin, is named for Stephen F. Austin who passed away in 1836. I found a birthday that was quiet interesting. Win-slow Homer, a famous American Painter was born February 24, 1836 in Boston, Massachusetts. He died Sep-tember 29, 1910 at the age of 74. Homer is one of the most famous American painters. His maritime paint-ings are superb.
So, a lot was going on in the United States in 1836. I suppose that in what would become Mountain City there was a lot going on also. It was truly the Horse and Buggy days.

You’ve got this! Alison asks: How can I help my friends and family that have depression or anxiety?

By Tracy Becker

Licensed Counselor

Thank you, Alison, for this question. It is estimated that approximately 16.2 million adults have at least one depressive episode per year.

The numbers for anxiety run as high as 40 million adults per year. Yet know these are not necessarily “real” numbers as a vast percentage of people do not seek help for either disorder.

Having said all this, it is quite “normal” for people to have episodes of anxiety, depression or a combination of the two in a life-time. There are situations that one would only expect this.

Some of these situations are death of a loved one; divorce; loss of income stream; or other life changing events. Your childhood life-experiences also have a great impact on your ability to cope with major life changes.

Some strengths that help us overcome would be having a strong emotional, spiritual and social support system, a positive outlook and mindset, and good physical habits of diet, exercise and a preventive care. If we lack in these areas, the struggle becomes more profound.

The most obvious way to help is to have your loved one get professional help. You can start with a licensed counselor who can easily
assess the level of impact, and determine what actions need to be taken to increase the person’s ability to overcome.

Yet, the main necessary ingredient is WILLINGNESS. If the person is not willing to overcome, change, or follow-up with treatment success will be greatly limited. Willingness isn’t something we can give to another person, they have to pull from deep with in to generate it, and have a great desire to feel better.

In a nutshell, it isn’t easy and may take patience, but keep trying with love and tenderness.

Resources: Insurance companies will help find a counselor. Google can be helpful too.
Books: From Tears to Triumph by Marianne Williamson; Top bestselling books on anxiety and depression

All information, content, and material of this article is for informational purposes only and is not intended to serve as a substitute for the consultation, diagnosis, and/or medical treatment of a qualified physician,
licensed counselor or
healthcare provider.

You’ve got this! Melissa Asks: How can we add more sunshine to the dreary winter months?

By Tracy Becker

Licensed Counselor

Thank you, Melissa, for this question. One thing for sure is that our natural circadian rhythms (our body clock) is impacted by the amount of sunlight we have in our days. According to sleep studies 7-9 hours a sleep is a healthy amount, yet in the dark cold winter months sometimes this can increase by 1-2 hours.

As a very productive-oriented society, this often causes us to feel as if we aren’t “doing” enough. Thus, an internal conflict brews: wanting to rest, sleep and be less active VS. being productive, getting everything done, and feeling anxious when we don’t.

If you forgive yourself when you aren’t as productive, and may not reach your goals you will feel better about yourself. Allow yourself time to rest, read and be at ease. Taking advantage of the Sun when it is out. Try a sunbath, even if its too cold to go outside, make yourself a spot where this sun is shinning in and let those healing rays wash over you.

Remind yourself of things to do with family and friends that lift your spirits and make you laugh. Get the games out, camp-out in the living room together, watch funny movies, make funny family videos, get creative with new crafts, learn something new, read a book as a family. There are many options to explore.
Eat lighter. If we eat a lot of complex carbohydrates and meats it makes us feel “heavier” in our bodies and more sluggish. Add more green vegetables and fruits. In addition, Get out in the fresh air whenever you can. Even if it is just a short walk. The cool clean air is good for you. Bundle up and have fun.

Resource: 85 Indoor Activities for Everyone

You’ve got this!

Tracy Becker answers your questions.

Jennifer Asks: “What can schools do to help students become more
tolerant of different people’s beliefs, appearances and backgrounds?”

By Tracy Becker

Licensed Counselor

Thank you, Jennifer, for this question. I have done some of my own research on this topic. The research suggests that if the teachers and staff can lead by example and integrate tolerance, diversity and multicultural dynamics into their style of teaching, and the way in which they interacting with the students the students are more likely to follow suit.

As you know this isn’t always easy, because, as adults, we have also been influenced by our own culture and environment; and may not have even notice for ourselves that we have intolerances; or we may have a habit of saying something that is offensive to some, but we don’t even realize it. Thus, this requires some inquiry into our own beliefs and intolerances.

If the schools can offer in-services classes, if they don’t already, to help the teachers realize their influence and power related to this topic, and how to integrate it into their already existing lesson plans, this would be a great start.

In addition, students, teenagers specifically, learn from each other. It would be prudent to make sure that there are multicultural opportunities for the student body, and supervised by an adult. This could range from students getting together to discuss openly the issues they see daily in their school and among their friends; an educational opportunity through an assembly where the questions and concerns are addresses by the student body; and celebrations of holidays other than the
traditional ones throughout the school year.
These are just a few ways the schools can start with the hopes that tolerance grows out into the community from this effort.

Resource: 64 days, 64 ways to non-violence K-12 curriculum based on Martin Luther King and Mahatma Gandhi’s
teachings. All information, content, and material of this article is for informational purposes only and is not intended to serve as a substitute for the consultation, diagnosis, and/or medical treatment of a qualified physician, licensed counselor or healthcare provider.

Drink your milk

It is an honor to serve Johnson County in the House of Representatives.
Time passes so quickly. It is hard to believe I am beginning my seventh year representing you. I am grateful for the opportunity you have given me.
One of the reasons I believe I was sent to Nashville is to protect our values, and many of them are under assault.
Now your milk has been targeted. Senate Bill 15 would change the way we are allowed to consume milk. The proposal would eliminate your right to drink the milkfrom the cow – that you own.
Plenty of people consider it dangerous to consume raw milk prior to processing. Well, there are gallons at the grocery store for those folks to buy. In fact, my 3-year-old son, Hudson, has been doing his best to keep our dairy farmers in business. And I support his healthy milk habit, every day.
But, what about the people who own the cow? To me, the question isn’t just about the cow, or the contents of the milk.
Behind it all is the government coming into our homes, or onto our farms, and telling us what is proper or acceptable.
At what point do we say, “Enough is enough?”
There is risk in drinking raw milk. There is also risk in riding a bicycle, in driving a car, and in countless other activities. Life comes with risk.
But are we going to allow “big brother” government to continually encroach on our lives, and take away rights we have enjoyed for so long?
Of course I believe in safety, but there are already controls and safety measures in place, and
the law shouldn’t be changed.
I also believe in being levelheaded, and that there must be a balance in any attempts at regulation. If people who own cows want to drink the milk, that should be their right.
In the name of freedom, and common sense, I oppose SB15, and intend to fight to keep the law as it currently stands.
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me directly in the office at 615-741-2050, or on my cell at 423-646-1589.

Rep. Timothy Hill is the Commerce Committee Chairman of the Tennessee House of Representatives.

Drink your milk

It is an honor to serve Johnson County in the House of Representatives.
Time passes so quickly. It is hard to believe I am beginning my seventh year representing you. I am grateful for the opportunity you have given me.
One of the reasons I believe I was sent to Nashville is to protect our values, and many of them are under assault.
Now your milk has been targeted. Senate Bill
15 would change the
way we are allowed to
consume milk. The proposal would eliminate your
right to drink the milk
from the cow – that you
own.
Plenty of people consider it dangerous to consume
raw milk prior to processing. Well, there are gallons at
the grocery store for those folks to buy. In fact, my 3-year-old son, Hudson, has been doing his best to keep our dairy farmers in business. And I support his healthy milk habit, every day.
But, what about the people who own the cow? To me, the question isn’t just about the cow, or the contents of the milk.
Behind it all is the government coming into our homes, or onto our farms, and telling us what is proper or acceptable.
At what point do we say, “Enough is enough?”
There is risk in drinking raw milk. There is also risk in riding a bicycle, in driving a car, and in countless other activities. Life comes with risk.
But are we going to allow “big brother” government to continually encroach on
our lives, and take away rights we have enjoyed for so long?
Of course I believe in safety, but there are
already controls and safety measures in place, and
the law shouldn’t be
changed.
I also believe in being levelheaded, and that there must be a balance in any attempts at regulation. If people who own cows want to drink the milk, that should be their right.
In the name of freedom, and common sense, I oppose SB15, and intend to fight to keep the law as it currently stands.
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to
contact me directly in
the office at 615-741-2050, or on my cell at 423-646-1589.

Rep. Timothy Hill is the Commerce
Committee Chairman of the Tennessee House of Representatives.