Tuesday, February 17, 2015

What Happens When We Unplug

Every now and again, preferably more often than not, we need a break.

A social media break.  A break from the refresh button, from the twitter notifications, from the Facebook updates, from the cute cat photos on Instagram and the latest smothered chicken and gravy recipe on Pinterest.

In other words, a technology detox.

The more I find myself returning to the computer to see if I have heard back on an article or if someone liked my post, I feel energy slowly fade as I base my self worth on whether or not my online presence is recognized.

Today dawned sunny and a day off from school so the kids and I headed out to visit my mom.  She lives on a grass seed farm in a beautiful country setting, perfect for recharging our buttons.

A lot happened on our detox day.  First of all, my kids didn't fight.  They interacted and played games together.  They swung on the swing set, they did art outside, they played Frisbee and they ruined the trampoline.  They ate brownies with cold milk.  They explored, they got sweaty and their cheeks grew pink.  

Gone was the incredible pressure of homework, the endless You Tube videos,  games on their phones, and amazingly, the arguing.

For a few hours life seemed normal again.  It felt surreal, almost dream like.  We have become so accustomed to the use of electronics that it feels weird and awkward not to have them . I admit I get fidgety and nervous if I leave my phone at home.  Something feels off to me if I don't have it at the ready.   

What happened?

I want to seize those precious moments just a little longer.  I want to be able to look up, make eye contact and have an uninterrupted conversation.  I am starting to find it difficult to accomplish.

Pretty soon my kids are going to go build their own nests.  Without me.  How I will  regret the days we were more intent on our phones than on each other.

I propose to have more of these detox days.  Smoothies optional. 

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