Thursday, July 12, 2018

I love you more than my cell: dating my husband nowadays

Text message was becoming popular when Zeke and I were dating back in 2004. I'm a proud late adopter of most technology. Just to give you an idea, I disabled text messages because people had recently discovered group text and I the non-stop mass text was overwhelming. I was also paying for each one of those messages.

As our relationship advanced, so did technology. Zeke got his first flip phone (remember the razr?) when we were newlyweds. We had the most fun adding people to the contact list and having the phone 'read' it back to us with that funny droid voice. We mostly used our phones to talk to people and we were yet not glued to social media through it.

Our phones were with us when we went out on dates. If we used them, we used them as recorders or just to talk to family and friends.

6 years ago my cell phone left the dark corner of my purse and it became a fixture on date nights. It was too easy to be glued to it: I was just taking a photo. Another favorite: I have to look up something real quick to help me make my point. Internally, was never okay with my own actions.

Zeke never asked me to stop using my phone on dates. I decided it was time to ease out of it. It has been challenging, yet, worth the effort.

First, I realized I'm not an Emergency Room doctor on call. True, the sitter may text me but I can answer those questions without having to interrupt the connection I am having with Zeke.

Dating is about connecting with the person who loves me more than anyone else in this world. I'm willing to protect that connection by disconnecting from my phone. I believe that in a way, I am forsaking all others as I promised him in my vows.

We now live in a culture that believes that the internet should see our every moment. I have learned to safeguard my dates so they become memories only Zeke and I share. This is very much a personal conviction from someone who uses social media often. Trust me, I don't show everything online and I see this trend continuing in my life.

I don't think that showing my every move is what inspires people. Inspiration has to come from a deeper place, louder than Instagram disappearing videos. My goal in life is not to inspire people but to make an impact in the lives that matter the most: my family's.

Nowadays, silently persevering and showing up at home as a wife and mother is my goal. The only impact worth having is the one that will make a difference for generations. Investing in my family matters. Safeguarding my relationship with them and investing in them matters.

When Zeke and I go on dates, I still take my phone. We still photograph the food and ourselves. My goal is to become the master of my phone, not the other way around. I take a photo and the phone disappears into the dark corners of my purse again.

Friend, we can spend countless hours discussing the evils of technology. I'm convinced that self-control is something I get to exercise if I want to see my life and marriage improve. This summer, I'm exercising self-control so I can fully enjoy the gift of my husband's presence. 

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