On Saturday mornings, HJ and I head to his swim lessons.  I have tried making small talk with the other parents, but everyone is short with their answers.  They are all too busy.

No, they aren’t to busy watching their children.  They are all on their phones.  This past Saturday, I paid close attention, of the 12 parents I could see, all but one of them was on their phone.  The one who wasn’t on her phone was reading a book.

I am not posting this to tell you what a good parent I am.  I was on my phone too.  Until I noticed what everyone was doing.  It made me put my phone away.  At that moment, I looked at my son who was looking right at me.  He was wanting me to watch him.  To pay attention.  I told him he was doing great and clapped for him.  He beamed.  I noticed the other children glancing over for approval.  I paid attention the rest of the class.  I told them they were doing great and cheered them on.  Everyone else?  They were on their phones.

Since then, I am being more conscientious of my phone usage.  I am making a point to leave it on the counter until HJ goes to bed.  I will glance at it every once in a while to respond to a text or make sure no one has called.  For the most part though, my eyes are on my son.

I know there aren’t too many years left where he will want me to chase him around the house or join him in the play room.  I won’t hear, “mommy, watch this” all that much longer.  So for now, I am embracing it.

I am loving watching how excited HJ gets over things.  Listening to how wild his imagination has become and how much he has turned into a “real kid”.

I feel bad for the parents who are missing out on these moments.  All because they are checking on statuses of their facebook friends or browsing the internet.  For now, I will play.  I am focusing on HJ.  I don’t want to be that mom that misses a huge moment for their child because I was “too busy”.  I will see when HJ becomes brave enough to go under water by himself.  I am watching him grow.

I hope this will also teach him that it is more important to pay attention to those around you then to be on your phone.  I don’t want him to grow up associating me with my phone.  I want him to remembering me being there for him.  Watching him and cheering him on.

Do you have rules on phone usage while at home?  If not, are you willing to implement some so you can have “play time”?

12 Thoughts on “Missing Moments

  1. I struggle with this a lot even though I am very aware that I am not as present with Baby Belle as I want to be. Our family has gotten better and we state that during and after dinner is the no phone zone! :)

  2. Sherri on March 6, 2013 at 8:55 am said:

    So sad at how true this is. Good for you for recognizing it and doing something about it. Enjoy all the memories that you are making with your sweet son!

  3. Sad, but true, bravo to you that you recognized a problem. H.J. has a wonderful mom, enjoy your mommy time while you can, it’s special and can never be replaced!!!!

  4. Melissa Heikes on March 6, 2013 at 10:14 am said:

    Great post, Kristin. Chris and I are the same. We seldom have our phones and when we do, we are looking at pictures of Calvin with him because he LOVES that! It is important for us as parents to not miss the chances we have to bond with our kiddos and to let them know through our actions they are loved. I don’t want to miss something that he or she does. I know that it can be hard for us as busy working parents to get too busy doing our selfish stuff or even continue working after the work day is through. It is important to make memories and let our kiddos know they are NUMBER ONE!

    • I am guilty of letting HJ play on the phone so I can get things done too. And when I go to work out classes, he is on my phone most of the hour. He is now going to have time limits (except during workouts, I need that time!)

  5. It’s funny to watch my kid playing with some of the other kids in our single parent group. Every one of those children has a DS or a gameboy or an iphone. When we are at social events, the other kids are all buried in their devices, and there’s my son, clamoring to play. He ends up getting into trouble because he can’t pry them away and the other kids get irritated that he is bothering them. It breaks my heart . It also strengthens my resolve about keeping my phone away when we are together. I am putting off buying any of those devices for him for as long as I can. Luckily his dad and I are in agreement on this!

  6. You what’s the greatest thing about your article?? That you noticed yourself doing something, realised it wasn’t what you really wanted to be doing, thought about message your actions were sending your son, and decided to change your own behaviour. Do you realise how powerful that is???? Well done!!!

  7. omg thank you for posting this! I am guilty of way too much phone usage and it really is sad. I am definitely going to try cutting down my facebook, instagram, etc phone usage because it’s funny (well not really) the other day my daughter commented “Are you attached to your phone mommy?” She noticed so it must be bad. Thank you for the reminder/wake up call. :)

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