We put it off as long as we could, but eventually all of our children have aged into the world of cell phones and other electronic devices that allow us to be connected and nosey and always just a few taps of the finger away. Not only can we track their every movement when they are out of our sight, but we can also control their viewing abilities and access their records and, most importantly, use them as primo bargaining tools if the attitude alarms start going off.
My favorite part about the technology of super connection, however, is getting to know each of my kids through the way they text me, what they text, and, of course, how I respond back. We each have our own special personalities and they shine through in the little backlit screen.
Meet my texting family:
The Emoji Master and Potty Word Texter. The youngest of the bunch, the sudden ability to communicate via actual written words is an incredible freedom. But only being eight years old, most of the text messages contain words so misspelled that auto correct is a lost cause (who knew that “leaterd” was leotard?) and/or contain some mention of poop. Also popular are phrases such as “Can I have a snack pleeeeease?” when I’m in the same room and copious overuse of emojis. Smile, wink, heart, poop, eyeballs, taco.
The Dude Texter. The Dude is a little too cool to be texting and can’t be bothered to create full sentences or even complete words. He still, however, cares about his mom enough to send such messages as “Sup?” 90% of his texts contain two letters: OK. The only texts to come through that actually extend to the second line are complaining about a sister.
The Teenage Friendly Texter. This kid of mine is the one to always say something sweet. I’m not sure how she does it, but she can turn any situation into a happy little moment. There is ample use of exclamation points, heart emojis, and extension of vowels to make something sooooooo fun!!! Or awwwwwwww soooo cute!!! Lol, ttyl, haha, idk, gtg.
The Business Texter. The Business Texter only texts when there is something important to say, although the occasional check in on his family does make my heart smile. These texts have actual meaning and direction, and usually the direction is telling me to do something that I forgot.
The Johnny-on-the-Spot Texter. (This is me.) The instant I hear tones go off and my screen light up, I morph into Quickdraw McGraw and am immediately reading the incoming text. It might be an important message, a happy pick-me-up, a “Sup?”, or even a list of food emojis from a certain hungry kid. They might not always been so thrilled to text their old mom, so I’ll soak it all in while I can.
Our family, living together in technological harmony. And I’ve got the thumb muscles to prove it.
Originally written 6.19.16