Yesterday a modern day, stay at home mom’s (okay maybe just this mom) top ten fear happened, my iPhone broke. I’m not above admitting I cried. Look, it was 6:30 in the morning, the kids were crying and clawing at me, and my only connection to the outside world just went and broke on me. It wasn’t a nice clean break either, it was screen smashed to bits, cut yourself when you try to swipe, broken. I immediately judged myself and in that moment was forced to admit I am an iPhone addict.
It’s not that I have loads of people I talk to during the day. If I’m lucky a friend, a cousin, even my husband will throw me a bone and send me a text. They’ve probably never gotten a response so fast because when I hear that familiar vibrate of a text come through I’m running (waddling quickly) to that phone. Really my addiction plays more into checking how many people have read my blog (hi to the three of you!), social media updates (note nothing happens on social media during the day people have lives and jobs), and checking my email a bajillion times not sure what I think I’ll be seeing in there. Lately, I’m also big into googling every symptom I have in hopes it means labor is near. My search history would include: ‘increase in grumpiness impending labor,’ ‘increase in pee impending labor,’ ‘sore left pinky toe impending labor,’ ‘two year old extra clingy impending labor?’ Who am I kidding every baby in our large lot of nieces and nephews haven’t come any earlier than a week past their due date. My husband’s family are known by their tendency to be late to everything, including their own births apparently.
So anyways yesterday I faced a long day of going without my trusty friend Google. I made it about an hour before enough was enough and I was headed to the Apple Store. My addiction had gotten so bad I realized, that dragging my pregnant self and my two kids through the mall didn’t even stop me. An hour later and 3, yes 3 bathroom stops later, my phone was dropped off and we had an hour to kill. Luckily, the mall has a free play area so we headed there.
I quickly assessed the situation and found a spot where I could watch the kids and not make small talk. I prayed we would make it through the hour without either of my kids escaping or pulling a random girls hair. After settling in I gave a quick look around I realized I was the only mom not on my phone. And it wasn’t for lack of trying, I reached into my purse no less than a dozen times during that hour absentmindly reaching for my phone. During that hour I learned a lot about my kids that I tend to miss. How the youngest while yes a daredevil tends to operate with enough caution where he’s able to escape without too many injuries, that my oldest tends to observe other kids doing an activity he wants to try before partaking himself leading to a much higher success rate. I also learned they love to lead a gang of toddlers in a revolt of the play area and climb over walls in order to get to the alluring carrousel. Mom points for me for actually stopping said revolt.
I don’t judge the other moms for being on their phones no more than I judge myself. But in that hour I saw how much I was missing and how entertaining and rewarding and relaxing it can be just watching your kids play. So for now I’ll attempt a healthy balance between putting the phone down and knowing when to pick it up, like now, because I desperately need to know if washing a sink full of dishes is enough to be considered ‘nesting.’