I’ve wrestled with the “screen-free” thing as of late.
But being a stay at home parent, I feel like I need to be connected to the outside world somehow or I will go crazy. Phone calls are constantly interrupted; I can’t remember a time in the last couple years that I have had an entire conversation without breaking up a fight, kissing an owie, or asking a child to lower their voice below screaming volume. I use my phone for texting more than I do phone calls, ironically, because I can text back and forth when time allows.
Now that we have an iPad, I’ve used that as well. It’s so much easier than using the desktop, since I can bring it wherever I want in the house (except the bathroom!!!). Facebook, blogs, and Twitter offer a good distraction, and allow me to keep up with friends, but I can’t sit on them all day long or the house will fall down around me.
Popping in a movie on a rainy day, when the kids are running wild gives them (and me) a chance to calm their inner monster and just chill. Pulling out the iPad and watching silly videos with the kids is always good in a pinch, and we have found some awesome apps too.
I had fully intended to dive head-first into National Screen Free Week, but when it came down to it I couldn’t bring myself to cut the cord. Using these devices (phone, computer, iPad, etc.) has become a habit with me AND the kids. They have their learning games and fun things, and so do I. Screen-free time has its advantages, and they far outweigh the “negatives.”
I think what it comes down to is spending the time we have, together. Cutting out distraction. Being more active. Enjoying being “in the moment” with the kids. Even if that means my dishes don’t get done all day and I don’t talk to a single other adult until 4 p.m.