We had twenty minutes to kill before the youngest got out of school. The oldest and I sat in the car and waited for the elementary school dismissal bell to ring.
Phone in hand, I was checking email and Facebook. She was texting a friend.
She started telling me about the winter formal dance. “Uh-huh” I said, as I glanced up at her and back at my phone.
“Mom, will you please put your phone down so we can talk?” she asked.
“Yeah, hang on, I need to finish reading this.” I replied.
“Luke was right.” She said.
I put my phone down. “Right about what?” I asked
What she said next broke my heart.
“A few weeks ago he told me it feels like your phone is more important to you that we are.” She answered, hesitantly.
My heart sunk.
“He said that?” I asked.
“Yes. And sometimes that’s how I feel, too.” she said.
“I’m so sorry, Grace. You have my full attention.” I told her.
My kids are right. I tend to get engrossed with whatever project I’m working on at the time. If I’m writing or texting or on Facebook or Twitter, my mind is seldom in two places at once.
We are such a tech gadget crazy family, so I had no idea they were feeling unimportant. By telling me this, it has helped me to realize I need to word harder at being fully present with who I’m with. It will be a challenge, because I struggle with sitting still. Even if we’re watching a movie as a family I tend to pull out the phone and look on Pinterest or Facebook.
The irony here is that I’m a big proponent of technology etiquette. I need to work at modeling this better.
Do you ever get so focused on a project that your kids or husband feels left out?
Do you have any technology etiquette rules in your house?