Sorry I’ve been a bit quiet on the blogging front because it’s been a bit hectic around here this past week. On a positive note, my oldest daughter who lives in Portland, ME and her best friend from Ireland came down to NY to do the tourist thing and I’ve been busy playing host. I’m grateful for the opportunity as just a few short years ago she wanted nothing to do with me. It’s been a gradual process but by my doing the next right thing and having always been available, the fence mending with both of my girls has continued and we are
finally in a really good place. I actually think that we may be forming bonds that surpass any that we’ve ever
known. On a sad note, there has been some illness and death in the family and that too has taken its toll both emotionally and time-wise.
Anyway, with 2 twenty two year olds in the house, I’ve beenreminded of what an “electronic” world we live in. Between the I-phones, laptops, with their texting and facebook, etc… , the way in which the world communicates really has changed in irreversible ways; some for the good and some not so good.
This new world does offer amazing opportunities with which to communicate that were unthinkable not so long ago. That being said, don’t let it become such a huge part of your life that it replaces real actual person to person “live” interaction. You see some people on facebook who have like 3000 “friends”! Really? How many of them do they actually ever see and interact with in person? I’m reminded of that commercial where the teenage daughter is sitting at the breakfast table on her laptop clearly on some social network and then comments to her 40 something parents who are on their way out the door that they “should get a life” or something to that effect. Then in the next scene you see said geezer parents, mountain biking down some
treacherous terrain with live in the flesh friends laughing and living it up. You know, real life with real people.
Jill and I were out to dinner the other night and there was a younger couple (mid 20’s) at the table across from us and I don’t think they uttered more than 10 words to one another the entire meal. They both had their respective heads buried in their I-phones and it was kind of sad to watch. I witnessed the same thing at the beach the next day. There was a group of maybe 8 young adults glued to their gizmos to the point that I didn’t see ONE of them go into the water, toss a Frisbee or a ball, read a book or even a kindle….NOTHING other than get lost in their cell phones.
It’s not just the young folks either. I mean, I guess I shouldn’t talk either. Here I am submitting my blog post on my website on the internet. I do, however, MAKE the time to interact with the world in REAL
time in the physical world. When I go to the beach I body surf, have conversations, read books, play Frisbee, etc… I play tennis with other human beings and not with a joystick.
You need to have balance or you can get lost in this electronic world and it can become a dependency every bit as unhealthy as any other. For people new to sobriety, on-line forums can be incredibly beneficial in terms of gaining new insights, coping strategies and to avoid isolation. But it too, can become incredibly addictive to the point where making the effort to go out in the world with other people becomes an afterthought. Please, please, please, don’t fall into that trap. It’s not easy but breaking out of any kind of self-imposed isolation is crucial to leading a fulfilling, authentic and fun life. I think in the next post I’ll revisit some ways in which you can re-connect to the “real” world.