This morning early, I was dressed for the day laying across a made bed, looking at my social media to catch up on the things I missed while sleeping: the latest antics of my daughter’s cat, a funny meme from a comedic friend, even more importantly a comment on one of my posts. I can honestly say I try to reduce my social media to slow periods in my day, determined not be overrun. In an impulse, my easy-going husband entered the room, ripped the phone from my hands and slung it to the edge of the bed. I had two possible knee jerk reactions to that surprising snatch, to get angry that I cannot complete my entrance to join Huge Grant in Nottinghill and finish filling out the Southern Belle name I deserve, or to turn my eyes from my phone and give Greg my undivided attention. We entertained an adult son and his fiancé over the weekend, so I get we hadn’t been connecting. After his abrupt tossing of my phone, I opted to start laughing, and looked at him squarely. After nearly 3 decades together, there was no need for him to explain, I got his meaning. My laughter said, “You got me.”
Greg’s simple toss caused me to reconsider my own need to be together with a living, breathing soul who can look me in the eye and understand. I was filling my time up with hollow attempts to be entertained. I am sure you have heard all the negative diatribes about FB and Instagram, and yet it hasn’t changed much about my usage. I cannot with good conscious pound the negatives home here due to my own behavior. My social media accounts have reconnected me with former college friends, far away family, and even new friends of like mind and interests. As I write, I want to contribute to the source of encouragement I have drawn from the lives of others.
Conversely, I can also see I allow it to encroach on the living and breathing family and friends who live in my sphere. Listening and connecting is not my natural go to outside of the counseling chair (admittedly maybe in the chair, too) and I don’t need to add to my own distractions. It is a delicate balance and I sense a need for juggling.
As I hug Greg and we talk about the upcoming day, I am reminded that living, breathing relationships are in need of nurturing. I say to myself, “Take a minute, and lay the phone down. Someone special to me needs my undivided attention.”