I read a powerful blog on how to miss a childhood. In this age of electronics, it's so easy to get sucked into what you're doing, choosing to place that text above your child. I want, above everything else, for my children to know that their mom loves them and values them above any friendship. Here is an excerpt from that post mentioned above, and it really cuts deep:
How to Miss a Childhood
*Keep your phone turned on at all times of the day. Allow the rings, beeps, and
buzzes to interrupt your child mid-sentence; always let the caller take priority.
*Carry your phone around so much that when you happen to leave it in one room
your child will come running with it proudly in hand—treating it more like a much
needed breathing apparatus than a communication device.
*Decide the app you’re playing is more important than throwing the ball in the yard
with your kids. Even better, yell at them to leave you alone while you play your
*Take your children to the zoo and spend so much time on your phone that your child looks
longingly at the mother who is engaged with her children and wishes she
was with her instead.
*While you wait for the server to bring your food or the movie to start, get out your
phone and stare at it despite the fact your child sits inches away longing for you talk
*Go to your child’s sporting event and look up periodically from your phone
thinking she won’t notice that you are not fully focused on her game.
*Check your phone first thing in the morning … even before you kiss, hug, or greet
the people in your family.
*Neglect daily rituals like tucking your child into bed or nightly dinner conversation
because you are too busy with your online activity.
*Don’t look up from your phone when your child speaks to you or just reply with an
“uh huh” so she thinks you were listening.
*Lose your temper with your child when he ““bothers” you while you are interacting
with your hand-held electronic device.
*Give an exasperated sigh when your child asks you to push her on the swing. Can’t
she see you’re busy?
*Use drive time to call other people regardless of the fact you could be talking to
your kids about their day—or about their worries, their fears, or their dreams.
*Read email and text messages at stoplights. Then tell yourself that when your kids
are old enough to drive they won’t remember you did this all the time.
*Have the phone to your ear when she gets in or out of the car. Convince yourself a
loving hello or goodbye is highly overrated.
Follow this recipe and you will have:
Missed opportunities for human connection
• Fewer chances to create beautiful memories
• Lack of connection to the people most precious to you
• Inability to really know your children and them unable to know you
• Overwhelming regret
If you find this recipe difficult to read—if you find that you have tears in your eyes, I
thank you, and your child thanks you.
OUCH! I don't know about you, but I am guilty of at least 1 of those! And I know that it's just not cell phones, but computers, TV, anything that you place as more valuable then your child! I want my children to grow up and know how to interact with people on a one-on-one level, not just thru a cell phone. My children will, hopefully one day, get married and have children. I don't want them to not learn the vital role of communication with their spouse, their children, their friends, because all they learned was to text out what they wanted to say, instead of talking about it face to face. So, it starts with me. I'm going to be putting away my phone during the day hours, when the children are awake and want to play. I will not return phone calls, unless they are important, until it is naptime or daddy is home. I will not be getting on the computer unless the children are napping or are in bed for the night. Will it be hard? Not really, I'm not on that much anyway, but even the small amounts I am on are to much. Children learn by example, not by what you tell them. I want my children to learn that personal interaction is much more desired then electronic interaction. So, if you call me, or email me, I'll get back to you during nap time, or once the kids are in bed for the night, unless it's an emergency. My family is a bit more important then a text!
Until Next Time,