I took a little bit of time off this summer to spend with my family, sit with my thoughts, and just allow my journey to unfold. Just like my mosquito friend, I was holding onto my ideas and dreams too tightly…leaving no room for everyday miracles.
The summer began as an experiment in Free Will
We allowed our children to have access to computers and TVs at their own discretion. This made for about a month and a half’s worth of fighting, agitation, and up to 6 hours a day of screen time. GASP! After a beach trip, when my kids couldn’t keep up with me on a walk and the family broke down into total pandemonium…I knew something had to change. I had touted “less screen time” for years; in talking, my husband got on board in a big way.
The kids woke up to a whole new world
No phone, no computer, and no TV*…not a single luxury, like Robinson Caruso, it’s primitive as can be. What might you expect to happen? Whining? Crying? That’s what I was preparing for, yet after they asked a few questions and tested the limits (which were abundant), they started to play together. Dare I say, they started to play with toys again! They were listening to music while lying on their beds, drawing, practicing the guitar, organizing their spaces, and…reading!
Enjoying every moment
We found ourselves together as a family. A trip to the grocery store suddenly became an outing…everybody wanted to go and get out of the house, which led to new areas of togetherness and a greater understanding of one another. A chance to blossom, shine, and be unique. Our love is deepening on so many levels and we are healing old wounds. An added bonus is that we have way more time than we ever realized to do all the things that are of value to us.
The BIG lesson
As we live in this NOW, NOW, NOW environment, filled with LED lights and distractions everywhere and we have questions that we need to be answered; instead of saying into space “Hey Google…” how about “Hey God…”? Imagine having enough peace in your lives to hear those answers as well. When I did just this very thing yesterday I received a loving response that went like this: “…that which you believe to be a lifeline (computer) is in actuality an anchor which keeps you stuck”.
This blue screen is burning me out, I feel tension in my shoulders and in my temples. I have come to realize I can write all my posts out in my journal (the old pen and paper), and then just turn on the computer to dictate it in Word and upload onto my website. This feels like the intended purpose of technology. That I can quickly share an idea, then get back to really living.
Loosening our grasp on the outcomes…
When we separate ourselves from constant distractions, we can focus on some much bigger needs. “Being present” each day is a wonderful focus. After spending a year so goal driven, I lost my broader vision of joy. Taking our thoughts, desires, and goals too seriously anchors us, making us unaware of the potential within each moment.
Time to smell some roses…
*2 uplifting movies or documentaries permitted each week; as parents, we are able to tend to business and school obligations.