I have put my phone onto “do not disturb” mode, since I am ALWAYS nose-to-phone.
Before Mitch died, we used to get so mad at each-other, because “You are ALWAYS on your phone!”
We were both guilty. Sometimes he was worse than me, and sometimes I was worse than him. It didn’t matter. We were getting lost in our virtual friendships, and losing our focus on each-other.
We made it a mandatory “no-phone” zone, in the man-cave. So, anytime we had family movie nights, we should take a few pictures, and send those phones back upstairs, so we could enjoy a movie together.
We talked about going out to dinner, where we had a huge bowl, and everyone put their phones in the bowl, and the person to grab their phone first, had to pay the bill.
We wanted to get away from the ball and chain that had become our lives. We wanted to focus on our friends. The ones that were there, live and in person.
Now, more than ever before, it is becoming more and more clear to me, that I need to put the thing down. I don’t need to jump every time it makes a noise. Sure, sometimes, important things come through via text or phone call, but, 99% of the time, it’s not more important than my daughter. More accurately speaking, it’s not more important than Megan and my bonding time, together.
I still feel awful when I pick up my phone, and see a text that I never responded to, or a missed phone call.
Today I got this long text message from my brother, that a friend sent to him. This was one of the 1%-important messages.
His friend said
“Mitch might have saved my life. I went to get my heart checked out after his passing and ended up needing a stint put in because of some blockage. It would have went unchecked but he woke my ass up”.
This made me tear up. Now, the thing that sentvme over the edge? My niece, who is almost 2 years old saw Mitch more than I did. She lived to “hate” him. She always calls our urn necklaces “Uncle Mitch!” It’s sweet. After my brother sent me those texts, he called. He told me “It’s been one of those days.” I knew what he meant. He said he had a guy out checking the sprinkler system, and my niece heard him, and was saying “Uncle Mitch! Daddy!” And pointing to the garage, where they were talking.
She thought he was Mitch.
It’s so amazing to me, that she recalls anything about Mitch that she does. It’s astonishing, really. She isn’t even 2 years old.
I’ll be the first to tell you, we did not teach her that our necklaces were Mitch. She pointed and said “Mitch!” One day, while I was still staying at Brady’s, within that 3 week period, after Mitch passed away. We all looked at each other, and looked at Nora, and were like, “WHAT?!” And she said it again!
Then, out of nowhere, she started saying “Uncle Mitch!” ❤️ He would have LOVED that.
So, as of this day, an each day forward, I am going to have my phone set to do not disturb, unless I am on call. I want to live in the NOW with my friends and family who are right here.
Don’t get me wrong. When I check my phone, I will call you back, or respond to your text messages. I just won’t be on it all the time, nor will I hear any notifications. I’ll get them when I check.
The addiction is real. The excitement that swells from those text tones, or Facebook dings is ACTUALLY just endorphins being released, making you high on the attention. And most of the time, it isn’t even REAL attention.