Putting faith before fear is the theme of our life these days.
A few days ago my amazing, hardworking, husband resigned from his job.This was not an easy or quick decision, yet one we ultimately felt was the best decision. For us and for the organization.
With this decision, we changed the entire course of our future. We had a plan! Now we don’t…..what were we thinking?!?! (we’re not sure, but we know we did the right thing, gotta love it when that happens…)
We are walking daily by faith. And trying to avoid fear taking over as much as possible. Yet when you’re dealing with the unknown, it’s so easy to let fear creep in. We do not know what our future holds at this point, yet we are spending our days doing all we can to create the future we desire.
One of the ways we are doing that is embarking on a 30 day screen fast.
This is kind of a big deal for us. We are the family who:
- Has a dad who is obsessed with music and spends hours of his day searching for the *perfect* playlist
- Has a mom who is available by text any second of the day and is known for having her computer with her everywhere she goes
- Has a son who can be found regularly building a new world in Minecraft
- Has another son who recently found the amazingness of digital books and spends hours reading (and game playing when he thinks no one is watching…)
- Has a daughter who downloads any app that has bright colors and kittens
Or….if you put it another way...a way that requires incredible courage on my part…a way that will show how imperfect we truly are:
- The mom who prefers to sit down with her computer instead of sit down to play a game with her children
- The dad who prefers to listen to music than his children’s incessant questions
- The son who prefers to explore imaginary lands in a game instead of playing with his siblings
- The son who is unhealthily gaining weight because of his newly acquired sedentary lifestyle on a device
- The daughter who is regularly given a device so her mom and/or dad can have a break from her constant need for attention
The family who has noticed more behavior problems in their children the past few months…
The husband and wife who have fought more in the past 5 months than ever before in their 19 year relationship…
We are disconnected. From each other. From what truly matters.
How did we get to this place?
Don’t we have screen time rules in our home? (yes…) Aren’t we doing all the things they say you should do if you’re going to have devices in your home and readily available? (we thought so…)
Last night Ian came home from a meeting he attends weekly and had a few realizations he shared with me.
We have a son who says he doesn’t want to go to church anymore.
We have a daughter who frequently tells her brothers, and sometimes even her parents, she hates them.
We have a son who gets incredibly angry if he does not get to play a device all day long.
We have a marriage that is hanging on by a thread.
And it’s time for a change.
After a long, hard talk, we decided one immediate change we could make that would have an instant impact would be a screen fast. No movies. No video games. No social media. We decided I could still use the computer for a certain amount of time each day, as we are in a period of huge transition (note: my husband resigned from his job just a few short days ago…) and I am seeking employment for our family….but other than that? Nope. No screens for me. (I’ll be writing a lot more with pen and paper…time to work on those hand muscles!)
Why am I sharing this with you? Why I am being so incredibly vulnerable and sharing our downfalls, our challenges?
Because I am confident there are people who read these words who have similar challenges.
Sharing our truths with each other, sharing our struggles? It’s important. We are here on this earth to learn and grow. And to help each other along the way. Life is about relationships. It’s about connection. We need each other to learn, to grow and to become our best selves.
Over the next 30 days, I fully expect there to be less stress in our home and more love.
I look forward to seeing and feeling transformations in our family. Transformations such as:
-Our children will fight less. Maybe not at first. Maybe at first they’ll fight MORE. But after the first little while, they will adjust to this change. They’ll read more and craft more and play outside more. They’ll plan and finish their treehouse with their dad, they’ll spend time with their grandparents and cousins. They’ll prefer to spend time interacting with their family over staring at a screen.
-My husband and I will feel more connected to each other. We will lay in bed each night and talk about our day. We will speak kind words to each other and show our appreciation more often.
-We will have found new employment. Employment that will be meaningful to us, that will allow us to use our skills and strengths on a daily basis, provide us with the financial means to pay all our obligations and contribute to our retirement and our children’s future. Employment that will bring hardly any stress to our dinner table and evening routines. Employment that will unite and connect us as opposed to drive a wedge between us.
I am looking forward to these next 30 days. I am looking forward to what’s next.