I have a confession. I have been feeling so convicted lately of having my iPhone as an extension of my hand. I know I have not been as present in my children’s lives as I need to be. I am consistently looking at my, pardon the language, damn phone! I know this is a problem, that’s why the conviction. I more than meet my children’s basic needs, but I know I need to be more present. Show them more of ME. I tweeted this the other day:
It’s kind of an ironic tweet, but in all fairness I did post it from my computer when I was working on a different blog post as I glanced over at my iPhone screen lighting up seemingly every 5 seconds. But, the Lord works in mysterious ways and he sent me Heather. My dear friend Heather who just gets me. She said she’d been feeling convicted of the same and sent me a blog post to read entitled “How To Miss a Childhood“. I encourage all parents to read this…I had tears welling up in my eyes because I identified all too well with this post and quite honestly I’m ashamed of myself.
But I’m a sinner and by grace I’m saved again.
I am going to make a conscious effort to stop using my phone so much, especially in front of my kids. I just take it for granted, like I’m sure you may be guilty of, that you can almost do everything from your smartphone these days. I can do my banking and transfer those funds to our joint account like I almost forgot without having to get up from nursing Ethan. I can make a grocery list and email it to Jay and it will appear instantly in his version of our grocery shopping app. I text WAY more with my sisters-in-law than I should in a day. It’s a sanity saver though for me sometimes…to even just have that adult contact when I’m by myself with the kids for the day.
Something in that post really popped at me that I am SO guilty of:
How To Miss a Childhood: 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.
Braden does this all.the.time. I seriously just have to stop. It definitely has the potential to negatively affect my relationships. I sadly admit that when my husband and I watch a movie, half the time one of us is on our phone. It’s just plain out right sad. I initiated a rule of no cell phones at the dinner table, and I really feel that it needs to extend farther than that. I’m almost tempted to say no phones when the kids are awake. I will check a text message and have it available for phone calls…but I do NOT need to read every tweet instantly and check Instagram a bazillion times a day, which I admittedly do. This needs to extend to all facets of my life. Why go out with a girlfriend if all I want to do is check my phone or tweet something?
I have been better lately of not being on my phone so much, but it’s still too much. Sometimes in the evening I charge my phone in our room so that I can’t hear or see it. It’s actually quite liberating! I need to do this more often. I need to be more present in my life!
I had a revelation the day that I read that post…and it was this:
Don’t be so concerned about missing out on the happenings of the internet…be concerned about missing out on the happenings of your children.
So that’s my new motto. I joined, and encourage you to as well, The Hands Free Revolution community on Facebook “For continued inspiration and tips about letting go of distraction to connect with the people you love. [They] are a growing community striving to grasp ‘the moments that matter’ in our one precious life!”
This is a life-changer for me. Honestly.