Call of Duty
On the last of school, my mild mannered son threw a teen sized tantrum over the Playstation 3 breaking. Then one of my other son's posted this on Facebook: "My call of duty is to play as much COD as possible this summer."
I wondered just what kind of summer we were in for.
Then the next day, the first official day of summer break, we left for a long vacation. There were no video games, no internet, no mobile phone service, no friends, obligations, homework, deadlines, 16 games to attend in a weekend, video game thumb, carpal tunnel or strained eyes. Translation: no stress.
Here is what the boys looked like sans technology and cultural expectation:
Were they depressed? Lonely? Desperate for the overstimulation by the world wide web? No. But they were in fact, completely different men.
We had actual, real live conversations with whole phrases and not instant message communication with "words" like u, 2morrow, B4, L8tr,brb, and ppudwug2store (Please pick up donuts when you go to store). And we certainly never talked about COD (Call of Duty).
In the spirit of honesty, we did use '"B4" when we were repeating back our diagonal line which won us $89.00 at Bingo. Yes I had to resort to gambling to get that good quality family time. Don't send me the scripture about how I shall not gamble, the bigger risk is not interacting with my kids. Plus God saw fit to have us win so I can't be all wrong, right?
Anyway, 5 days post trip, our boys remain changed. They are exercising every day, practicing their music for hours, interacting in meaningful ways with other human beings face to face and are generally happier people. The video games have been played, but it's been minimal.
So I ask you fellow parenting soldiers, what is your Call of Duty this summer? Maybe just maybe, you are to fearlessly lead your family to and through a land of no internet, no 3G network and no cultural expectation, for a time.
Be warned though, that land can definitely come with no Starbucks attached, as it did for me.
We all gave up a little something, and each of us are better for it.
Long after the last iPhone has died, the spirit of authentic, loving relationship will reign eternal.
I love summer, fragmented thoughts and all. Your post is right on target. My Call of Duty every summer is that my kids learn something. They’ve both decided to focus on music and exercise and I’ve added daily reading time. It’s fun to listen to PinkGirl practicing Fur Elise on the piano downstairs while FavoriteSon practices Smoke on the Water on electric guitar upstairs. We got rid of our redneck (above ground) pool last month and moved our old trampoline to level ground in its place and PinkGirl takes a CD player outside and jumps while singing at the top of her lungs. Sometimes she puts the sprinkler on the tramp. Good times. Good times. FavoriteSon gets his learner’s permit on Friday, so there’s some learning to do there also. eek.
Love this Julie! Sounds like you answered the call many years before I did. : ) These are memories that you guys will have forever. Precious. We are so blessed!
Love it! Glad you had a good time and that the trip had such a good effect on all of you!
Oh, my “COD” with all my daycare children this summer is to bring us closer as friends and caring about each other while experiencing life.
Every blessing to you JoAnne as you pursue your most worthy COD! Thanks for stopping by and have a great weekend!
What a handsome group of young men you have there!!
Ah…the pull of the Internet, the video games, the phones, the ipods….
And to get away, and for a bit – to connect more with each other. Audra, how wonderful!! And that this may continue to carry over into daily living – even more so. Your family is such a shining example of living well…I’ve always felt that. Today that shines even more brightly as I look at these pictures and read these words….
Smiling fondly….thinking of you and your family…
Thank you Lance. Hoping you can meet them in person one day to see if your feelings are right! I think like attracts like, and you’ve got yourself one great family, who knows how to live well by loving each other freely. How lucky are we Lance? Very, very blessed.