The other day, we rewarded with a fluke spring day in what is typically my least favorite winter month and we headed to the neighborhood park. As my husband chased Bean around the basketball courts, I found myself lying on the ground trying to get the perfect shot and it made me wonder. When it comes to parents and technology are we so caught up in the capabilities technology has afforded us that we are forgetting to live in the moment?
I put my smart phone back in my pocket, and picked myself up off the ground to join in on the game of chase uncertain as to whether I was feeling guilty over spending too much time behind the screen of my phone.
When it comes to parents and technology the landscape has changed dramatically from when we were children. I don’t have to remember to grab a camera or a separate video camera before we leave for adventures because my phone is ALWAYS attached to me. I don’t have to carry a planner to plan play dates and mom time because my PHONE is always on me. I don’t need as large of an arsenal of toys for waiting rooms and restaurants because my phone is loaded with toddler Iphone apps is always on me and Bean can navigate it almost as well as me.
The question is am I missing out on the simple joys of parenting because I am behind the screen trying to capture the experience with a frame worthy shot or uploadable video? I follow my Bean around with the Phone snapping pictures desperately wanting to capture every moment. Perhaps it is because I do not have many pictures of my own childhood. Perhaps, I want her to know that I cherished every single moment I was blessed to have with her. However will she remember me snapping endless pictures from behind my phone screen or will she remember me chasing her through the yard with my attention fully devoted to the sound of her laughter.
With my phone securely zipped into my pocket, we ran as a family across the courts laughing like children, laughing those belly laughs that only come when you are truly in the moment.
I don’t see myself giving up the smart phone any time soon, that would require a visit to Rehab and a very intensive 12 step program but I think it may be time to schedule some technology free time into our days. Maybe some trips to the park where my phone remains charging in the car. I think it may be time for me to watch the Bean’s delight when she goes down the sliding board by herself without trying to capture her expression in a photo.
This change may mean leaving the park without a priceless photo to post to Facebook showing how cute I think my kid is but I think the memories we will make will be more than worth it. After all, I am a blogger, if I feel the need to brag about an experience that was not captured on film but that is too cute to keep to myself, I will simply come home and write about it.