I vowed I wouldn’t become one of them. You know, the smartphone drones whose thumbs furiously fly on their screen while their child swings alone screaming, “Mommy, push me. Mommy. Mommy!”
We’ve all seen them. We’ve all judged them. And now, I fear I may becoming one. I had this revelation last week while I attempted to send a text while on a moonbounce. Yes, it looked as ridiculous as it sounds. My two daughters jumped around me giggling while I tried to stabilize myself on the bouncing contraption, eyes glued to my cell phone screen.
This was my biggest fear when I got my smartphone. In fact, until I traded up a few months ago, I was one of the last people in the world with an old-school flip phone. The guy at the phone store said it was a relic as he ushered other workers over to see the much-rumored flip phone of years past.
I resisted the smartphone craze for so long because I was determined not to become a techie mom. I did not want to text while my children played. I did not want to check emails at traffic lights. And most of all, I didn’t want to be that mom who is constantly saying, “Just a second, honey. Let me just finish this one thing.”
But, here I am admitting I’ve fallen into the trap. I don’t think I am as bad as many people (isn’t that what we all say?), but I am determined to be better. I don’t want my kids to grow up looking at the back side of my cell phone while I say “hold on” for the 100th time.
Bottom line: moon bounces are for bouncing, not for texting. Parks are for swings and mulch cakes, not emails. And children don’t wait forever. I’d hate to look up one day to find my kids aren’t begging me to play anymore because they were tired of hearing “just one more minute.”
The truth is this period of my life is “just a minute.” And then, these moments — and these children right here at this age right now — are gone. They don’t hold. They don’t wait. They fly by at warp speed, and if I’m not careful, I’ll miss them while trying to “finish this one last thing.”
How do you balance the convenience of cell phones with your kids? Do you find yourself getting lost in your phone or email, or are you able to step away and just be in the moment?