Those of us who have kids of our own, have nieces and/or nephews, watch children, work in around children or are generally in the land of the breathing have watched the evolution of kids and technology. Technology in this frame is not limited to computers … televisions, game sets, virtual tools, social media, telephones, computers, tablets, e-readers and anything else that I need help trying to get to work.
So, at the start of Summer 16 (lookin’ for revenge … all summer 16 – sorry. I digress!) I mentioned to my husband the idea of getting phones for the kids, at the time Nia was 8 and Kyle was 10. Neither had asked, but with them traveling for a month or so with the grandparents it would be a good way for them to call or text us if and when they wanted or needed to.
This was huge. We didn’t know the average age of kids and cell phones. We have seen kids checked out of family and into technology at restaurants and other public places and we didn’t want that. Up to this conversation, Jeremy & I have kept clear and consistent guidelines about technology. Simple: no technology in any form (television, computer, tablets … nothing) on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday of a school night. If the computer was required for an assignment … it needed to be accompanied by a note from the teacher. Now, let me also say, there were occasional exceptions.
With all said, we agreed the two people living along with us on this life journey would be given individual phones with individual numbers. We control the phones the way we control all other technology – like their parents.
Off for a month with the grand parents. Remember – the impetus for purchasing the phone. Two kids which means … two things happened:
(a) boy child – completely not interested in the phone. It typically can be found in the middle of the floor or tucked away somewhere – anywhere. He called maybe twice over the course of the summer … the two times he needed something!
(b) the daughter (who is typically very shy, extremely sensitive & super loving) – sent wonderful and completely unexpected messages.
Messages from My Daughter
Even as I look at the screen shots scroll by, my heart skips a beat. She is truly the love of my life. Nia fills a space that makes me look at life differently. Her view is special and very unique. If I see a figure eight – Nia sees a snow man. If I believe for one second that stripes and dots don’t match – she matches my disbelief with pulling it off flawlessly.
We are different in that she is very creative and full of art and I am very linear. We are the same in that we love unequivocally the same two men (Kyle & Jeremy) and on this day we occupy the same space in one another’s soul.
I wait in anticipation for her texts – even the angry emoji face. Her texts also help me to enter into her space of shyness. I am able to ask questions about the text as well as have private and intimate conversations without others. This has been so very special.
If we had it to do all over again … the answer is yes, we would absolutely purchase phones!
My Nia Boo!