In today’s busy world, a cell phone plays a most significant role. It allows us to be in touch with and about those we care for, to be responsive in times of need, to bring to each other a sense of connection.
Except when it doesn’t.
Sitting in a restaurant on Sunday morning, I noticed a family with two young girls sitting nearby. Both parents were involved and connected with their cell phones – their fingers flicking, their eyes on the screen.
The two young girls sat there – until one began kicking the chair of the other – and the other retaliated by pinching her sister’s fingers.
They too were looking for connection – to be noticed – and it came, unfortunately, in the form of a negative response from their parents.
What made me feel so sad on observing this Sunday morning family was that this was the most perfect time for them to talk to each other, to laugh together, to connect with each other in that intimate familiar way that only happens when there are no other distractions.
But we’ve all witnessed so many similar circumstances, participated perhaps in like situations ourselves – when the urge to check and recheck our cell phones takes us away from those genuinely real moments of connection.
So perhaps when we’re with the people we love, respect, care about, work with, play with, eat with, we recognize and seize this opportunity to “be” with them, to be “in touch” with them – for real.
I think we’ll all notice our reception is perfect.