Sometimes I wonder.
I wonder what life would be like without the internet. Without cell phones. Without blogs. Without televisions or sitcoms. Without iPads.
Without technological distractions.
Don't get me wrong – you all know how much I love this dear blog of mine. It's my friend, my buddy, my pal, my organizational virtual notebook and a comfort.
I've just been pondering a bit lately on how ‘busy' our lives can become with all of these distractions.
For example, when I had my Blackberry, I remember getting flustered in the car as Stu, G, and I were piling in for a quick trip to the grocery store. I was trying to check the update on a message from Facebook that I had received on my phone, all the while making sure I had a sippy cup of milk and cash for our purchases. I got frustrated because I was trying to do it all between our front door and the end of our driveway – the buttons on my phone weren't responding fast enough for my attitude and I ended up snapping at Stuart who had asked me a simple question about which store we were headed to.
It was a humbling moment.
And no, I'm not trying to blame my bad attitude on my phone. It wasn't technology's fault. It was my fault for letting it rule my attitude in an area that it shouldn't have. I acted like that Facebook message was crucial to the survival of mankind and I chose to focus on it instead of focusing on the immediate needs of my situation and family.
In and of itself, technology is an incredible resource. And one I am very grateful for. Make no mistake.
But after Georgia was put to bed the other night, Stuart and I barely said a word before we both sat down at our respective computers to get to work on stuff. Sure, some of it was important. But some of it was frivolous and unimportant – definitely not worth giving up time spent in conversation and fellowship with my husband.
My marriage seems to be the relationship that suffers from technological distraction the most. The husband doesn't scream and shout at me when I forget to pay attention to him like my toddler does. But that doesn't mean my distraction and inattentiveness to him is any less hurtful or any less damaging.
We're both very guilty of being easily distracted by the world wide web, my friends.
Why do I seek entertainment there?
Is my soul not much more refreshed after time spent with my husband in prayer? Or time spent talking with him over a cup of tea?
How else can we dream together? How else can we plan together? How else can we grow together? We must spend time together without distraction – it is essential to our friendship and to our romantic relationship.
Sometimes, we enjoy snuggling together and watching a movie (hello, Harry Potter). I greatly enjoy these moments – when technology can actually bring us together instead of forcing itself between us.
What I can't stand is when we both sit with our faces stuffed in a screen, both consumed by seemingly ‘important' thing we are doing…all the while, failing to nourish the most important earthly relationship we've been blessed with – our marriage relationship.
I don't wish to spent my time ‘pinning' all the beautiful things of the world, all the while missing out on the beautiful moments I've been blessed with already but have been too blinded to see because of such distractions.
Sure, there is a place for alone time, for magazine time, for hobby time, for study time. As a blogger, I can appreciate this time very much. I usually aim to blog while Georgia is napping and Stuart is at work. That way, it doesn't take away from my time with either of them.
But then, blog post accomplished, I'll still kill an hour at night on the computer scanning Pinterest or Facebook or new recipes or blogs.
It's very counter-productive.
I hope that gives you some comfort. You're not alone. I've got issues – I struggle with balance and self-control with the best of 'em.
And I'm not here to argue against using this wonderful technology. I just want to focus on ‘doing' rather than reading about. Smelling the fresh air from my porch at dusk. Spending precious moments with my husband and little one. Dreaming with them. Loving on them. Serving them.
Taking the hyper-drive-always-connected-to-the-whole-world back a notch…
…and instead focusing on this part of the world at this very moment.