It was not long along, maybe in the mid 1990’s that I first discovered the internet. My two boys, will never know what life used to be without internet and computers. A closer look at this topic made me realize that technology has invaded our family.
At the security check at the airport, after taking off the shoes… our family started taking out the 2 laptops, 2 iPhones, 1 Blackberry, 1 iPad, 2 DSI’s, 1 flip camera and 1 Sony E-reader…. plus all the chargers for each item. I was shocked, as if I did not know we had all those things, but seeing it all spread out in those airport security bins gave me a visual image of how ridiculous it was that our family was sucked into using all this technology just like all the other families that came through that security check point before and after us.
I looked at the family behind us… 3 iPod Touch, 2 cell phones, 2 laptops. Another quick look after I finally put back my shoes, I noticed a toddler holding his own iPad, teenagers with their iPods, Kindles, and more laptops and cameras.
I am feeling that we are almost reaching the point that we are getting too much of a good thing. I said almost…. for now I don’t really feel that the technology is interfering with my kid’s social and intellectual development if those are some of the concerns that may arise by allowing young kids to have access to technology. I smile when I think back on the incident in which my 7 year old son was showing his Dad and Grandmother how to work the iPad, or when my 8 year old son asked: “Grandma, do you have WiFi? I need WiFi for my iPad” when we went to visit her in Louisiana… and he got a big “Huhhh?” from her as a reply.
During those few days that we visited Grandma, my mother-in-law, we made sure she learned how to use the webcam, we got her a new laptop, signed her up with a new email address. For my mother, last time when she came to visit from Brazil, we also helped her find a new laptop, and it was essential that it had a webcam for Skype she would remind me. We taught her how to use her new Skype account. We felt that we had to do a technology make over with both the Grandmas, and now I am envisioning them unloading their own laptop at the security check point next time they fly to come visit us in California! I am also waiting to see a friend request from Grandma on Facebook soon…
I recently downloaded the Skype application on my iPhone, and my mother calls me all the time! It is pretty funny because she actually thinks that I am online and available at 4 am in California time. She calls me during class, and when I am at meetings. I love it and brings a smile to my face to know that it is now so easy for my mom who lives in Brazil to see me on Skype any time of the day…. She is able to comment on my bad hair cut and zits on my face. She was able to see her newborn grand-baby in Australia for the first time on Skype. For our family, when each one of us is spread out as far as we could rom each other in this world, it brings us together every time we have the opportunity to Skype.
I hate to admit, but I use Facebook more than I think I should. My son one day came home from school and he was upset. He asked me…. “Mom, how does my teacher know that we had pizza for dinner last night?” I had to tell him that I posted that as a status on my Facebook. He looked at me like a parent looks at a child and said: “Mom, don’t ever do that again! That is embarrassing and why do you need to say that anyways?”. He was right! Who cares if we had pizza for dinner? I also noticed that when I take a picture or videotape they will ask me not to post it on Facebook. So I am cutting down and monitoring myself, but I relapse some days.