Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Connections: #reverb14 Day 8

How have you created and/or sustained connections in your life this year?

I am overly connected in my life. Yesterday I intentionally put my phone out of reach for 2 hours. When I went back to get it, I had 22 text messages. Twenty-two messages in two hours. Crazy! I am always just a text message away from my kids and my coworkers. Sometimes that gets stifling.

I've been told I am very available to my kids. It's been said in one of those "oh it's a good thing but kind of a bad thing too" kind of way. Yes, if my kids call or text, I will answer. Deal with it.

This summer, what could have been a tragedy, turned out to be an opportunity to reconnect with Kid 1.  For a few years now I've felt him slipping away from me. I don't mean in the usual just getting older kind of way. I mean this kid is checking out. He's not just pulling away from me, he's pulling away from the world.

It scared me. But I couldn't reach him.

In hindsight, I'm thankful everything came crashing in on him this summer. It shocked him back to the world and to the help he needed. Even though for weeks we were separated from each other, we were constantly connected. Twenty-four hours a day that phone was next to me and I answered no matter where I was or what I was doing.

And it was me that he called. No one else. He wanted to connect with me.

Since he's been home, we are re-learning how to connect with each other. At 20 years old he is but a man child. I have learned to sit back and watch him learn to navigate his way to adulthood. And to be available when he needs help.

I don't think I even realized how much he had slipped away. Now that he's back I'm sometimes surprised when he interacts with the family. I always knew he was smart and funny. But now he lets everyone see that. It makes my mom heart happy when I see him reconnecting with his brothers. He makes an effort now to be involved in their life as well. The siblings had distanced themselves from him for many years. They also are learning reconnect with him.

I believe that Kid 1 now sees the importance of staying connected. He has forged a bond with a new group of people that want him to succeed. Recently, he admitted he felt himself having the potential to slip down but instead he reached out and connected with a member of his group.

It was just a phone call. But it was the connection he needed to let him know he's not alone, he's worth fighting for and to make the decision to keep moving forward.

This post is part of #reverb13, a series of daily writing prompts to explore the year passed and to manifest the year ahead. This prompt was found at Kat McNally Words To Soothe The Weary Soul. 


  1. Wow, this is such an excellent question and something I really need to ponder about myself. I am so connected digitally but so alone personally. It's a strange new smart phone driven world we have created for ourselves. I am proud of kid 1. Reading this post made me tear up a little bit. He is still that goofy 6th grader, or the 8th grader chatting to me while I worked out. It's been heart breaking to hear his struggles. I am glad he's beginning to understand his full potential.

  2. Natalie - When I originally began writing this post it focused on how I am so connected that it frustrates me, yet at the same time I am so alone and lonely. But then it just morphed into talking about Kid 1. So I understand what you mean. Everyone is just a text away, but not really there.

  3. I'm glad that your son has figured out how to make his way back to you all and how to reach out rather than retreating. I think most kids find retreat a bit, and most of us find our way back but sometimes there are more serious issues at play.

    As for the idea of digital connection vs "real life" connection - I don't mind the connection to people I care about. I do mind the intrusion of things like work. I resisted putting my work email on my phone for the longest time because I feel like I give enough time as is, but I was missing out on too many things...like emails from my boss at 2:00 in the morning ;)