No tech: Let’s make great memories together
Last week I was sitting on my bed, playing with my phone, doing research for this article — yeah, that’s it.
My oldest walked into the room and commented on the fact that the load of laundry sitting there wasn’t going to fold itself. She had heard that very thing from her mother or me numerous times, and she was 100 percent correct. Of course, my first reaction was to get defensive and state that it would get folded, and it did.
But what example was I setting by playing around on my phone when I had something else I had to get done?
Little eyes are always watching, and they analyze the data they see and create their own reality from it.
This modeling behavior is very prominent when it comes to our favorite pieces of technology. I happen to be more than a little obsessed with Madden Mobile. I’m not proud to say that I have used the phrase “one more minute” more than once. I get to hear that very phrase from my son pretty regularly at dinnertime, especially as he is playing the very same game on his tablet.
As parents, if we are texting friends or scrolling through social media at the dinner table, how can we take offense when our children want to do the same thing? We have a responsibility to model the right behavior. Think about your memories of your childhood and the time you spent with your parents. For me, dinnertime was always a chance to recap our days.
To this day, we still talk about how my younger brother spent every meal looking at his reflection in the glass sliding door in our kitchen. He looked at himself. Every. Single. Meal. That is a story we laugh at when we get together for Sunday dinners now. We laugh about the time my mother threw a piece of steak at my father when he bet she would never do it. We recall the masculine battles for the last chicken cutlet in a house with two boys.
Do we want our kids retelling our grandchildren the stories that made an impression on them about some crazy happening? Or will they talk about how everybody was watching cat videos during every meal?
Writing this article has given me a moment of self reflection. I am going to make an effort to limit my digital blitzing of the quarterback, or throwing the deep sideline pass.
It’s more important for me to give my children memories of me without my face buried in my phone.
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