A few weeks ago I saw this photo on my Facebook feed posted by Today’s Parent magazine and was immediately inspired by it. I saved it to my phone, intending to get writing post haste, and then life happened. The photo has sat on my phone for a while now, every so often I come across it when I flip through my pictures and I get inspired again! Then life happens and I get pulled away to feed, clothe and/or bathe these beings that cause me to rely so heavily on social media! Today I stumbled across a blog post called Why I Ditched My iPhone and it got me thinking hard. I absolutely love my iPhone and can’t imagine life without it. It is my primary means of remaining a member of the human race.
I’ve always been something of a loner, it is difficult for me to make friends with people, I think I come across as stuck-up and arrogant when really I’m just shy and reserved. I live in fear that I somehow impose my presence upon people who would prefer that I not be around. Having my iPhone with it’s Facebook and Twitter apps makes me feel like I have at least some semblance of a social circle (even though I know for a fact that I’m one of thousands of friends of some of my Facebook contacts!) I feel much less shy about sharing things when I know that people have the option of just scrolling past quickly should they choose to. (No imposition!) I rarely post a direct link to this blog on my Facebook because I don’t want my family and acquaintances to feel obligated to read it (which they will) and the few family members who chose to follow my blog have truly delighted and surprised me by doing so (well…not so much my mother but I truly thought my husband would scoff!)
Within hours of my children being born I had posted photos of them, when I got my new piano I created an entire Facebook photo album dedicated to it, when I’m awake at 4:00am it’s nice to post a mini rant and see if anyone else is awake to read it. It’s interesting for me to be able to know (albeit vaguely) what is going on in the lives of others, my life largely consists of feeding, cleaning, entertaining and being entertained by two little boys which, while satisfying, is not a very broad existence. I find myself constantly checking Facebook and Twitter just to see what’s going on in the world beyond my little part of it.
So I obviously need my social media to avoid becoming a near shut-in and for that I need my iPhone (since the instant I open the computer I have little hands wanting to “help” by randomly clicking the mouse which has led to driver deletions, blank screens and other fatal errors) Between the iPhones and iPads floating around this house there isn’t far you can go without some form of technology nearby. I think that to try and restrict access to the omnipresence of the internet and technology will be doing my children a disservice. Like it or not, they will grow up surrounded by it and they need to know both how to use it properly and how to make sure it doesn’t take over their lives.
I also really love to read. I read and re-read books until they fall apart (I’ve gone through two copies of “Heidi” and an entire set of “Anne of Green Gables”) so I was ecstatic when Apple brought out the iBooks app. Even more so when I discovered that I could get “Heidi” and the “Anne” books for free! I have twenty or so books saved in my phone that I can carry around in my pocket, it’s so much easier to hold my phone in my hand and flip pages while I’m breast feeding than a 1,200 page novel that weighs a ton (I’m also a fan of Diana Gabaldon’s “Outlander” series, coming to TV in a few months, can’t wait!)
I also really love the WordPress app, not really for it’s writing features (through no fault of the app, I just can’t type fast enough on my iPad to keep up with my brain.
I need a keyboard for the iPad Whoops, don’t want my husband to read that, he’ll think I’m angling for a Mother’s Day gift!) but for the app’s reader. I came rather late to the world of blogs but am loving it! There are so many stories out there that people have to tell, whether they are angry, sad, uplifting or just plain funny, I read them. I like having this wide world of writing available at my fingertips whenever I have a moment to sit and read. (Anyone with small children knows that often one only gets a minute!)
I absolutely think that my kids deserve my eye contact and complete attention, rather than only seeing me engrossed in whatever is on my screen. I truly make an effort to ensure that it’s very seldom that I don’t put down my iPhone/iPad/computer and attend to whatever need they may have at the time. I think that it’s possible to give my children the attention they deserve while at the same time teaching them that they need to allow me to finish what I’m doing (providing it’s something important like finishing an Angry Bird level!) before demanding that I attend to their own needs. That’s something that I believe children should be taught anyway and if I can do it while enjoying myself with my phone’s nifty bells and whistles then I think we both win. (I could use something like laundry or cleaning as important tasks that need to be finished first but who am I kidding? I’ll take any excuse available to not clean or do laundry!)
So now I’ve put the kids in bed and am sitting on the couch with a computer on my lap, surrounded by my iPhone (my mother is texting me from the Gordon Lightfoot concert that was her Christmas present from my siblings and I, she’s having a fantastic time!) and three charging iPads. I think I’ll pour myself a glass of wine and check my Facebook to see who’s living an exciting life before heading to bed!