The first was a trip to the Discovery Science Center and the second was an Easter egg hunt at church.
Both things are super fun and a great way for my son and I to spend time together.
When we got to the science center my boy ran over to the first station and proceeded to start having fun and doing exactly what we were there to do. HAVE FUN. I however, did the thing that has become entirely too familiar. I whipped out my phone, made my son pose, and tried to get him wrangled in to take his picture so that I could share with my "friends" how MUCH fun we were having. I did this a couple of times throughout the place and the day as I had done a million times before.
I posted the pics and periodically marveled at how many "likes" and "comments" were made about the super fun times we were having. This is a thing that has become too typical in my life and outings with the undisputed most important thing in my life.
The next event however, changed my whole perspective hopefully forever.
We arrived at the egg hunt, helped out a little, got in line for our picture with the bunny, did some crafts, and waited for the big event all the other families. My boy was playing in the floor with a hot wheel the bunny just gave him like it was both indestructible and made of gold at the same time.
To watch a boy play with a hot wheel is a beautiful thing. So much joy, and imagination in how they play. They fly, fight, go underwater, become life saving crews and armed forces vehicles in seconds. All with a seamless transition that all the others understand and accept like I accept that air conditioners make air cold. I don't know how and don't care. They make air cold and I am thankful for it.
Anyway, I digress. Back to the task.
I noticed a familiar behavior from all the adults in the room. It was the same behavior I had done a million times and had done the same just day before at the science center. They were all manufacturing fun and living this moment through a view finder. They weren't present. They were hours or minutes ahead of themselves and already sharing magical moments and memories without having any.
When I was a kid my parents had a camera and we took pictures but, there was a magical substance which made those pictures limited and precious. FILM. It was expensive to take a million pictures and even more expensive to get them developed. So pictures were precious commodities for only the most special occasions. I am thankful for this now.
Now pictures aren't special. My son will have his whole life chronicled digitally, and stored, not in shoe boxes where he can find them and go through them when I pass, but on a digital cloud.
Our lives have become too shared, liked, notified, and checked in. We share our dinners, who we are with, where we are every minute of the day, and how we are feeling about everything. Nothing is precious and / or special any longer.
Well not for this guy any longer!
I am going to try and be here now. BE. HERE. NOW.
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