During April 2017 I will be blogging about my Courtship Memories from A to Z . These challenge posts will also be found at Creation and Compassion http://marcyhowes.blogspot.com/

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Text Messages and such

Thirty five years ago when my BFF and I loaded our clothes and books and dishes into her car and headed off south to college, we didn't have computers or cell phones.  I had a beautiful bright blue manual Smith-Corona typewriter, a White brand sewing machine, and a bright orange wind up alarm clock.  I probably had some electric hair rollers, an electric hair dryer and a curling iron.  Those were my appliances.  I did not have electronics.  My parents wrote me letters once a week, usually on Sunday evenings and mailed them off the next day.  It was good to get their letters mid-week as a pick me up and something to look forward to.  I tried to answer their letters regularly, but I'm sure there were weeks that I missed.  Ocassionally I would call home, like when I realized that I was way over my head in my Chemistry 105 class and needed a shoulder to cry on, but most of our communication was through the mail.  I headed off to school, and though I missed home and my parents, I forged into my new life and adventures with little input from or reporting back to home.

In today's world of instant communication, it's a bit harder to let go when the kids leave home.   I think that all of the older kids had cell phones when they left, and I know that they all had access to computers and the internet and email.   And now most of us have access to skype too.  I try to keep my intrusions into their new adult lives to a minimum, while at the same time letting them know that I love them, support them in their new lives and goals, care about their triumps and struggles, and that I am available to help if needed and able.  I'm sure that sometimes in the past I have been a tad bit too interferring, and at times not involved or communicating quite as much as I should have been.  It's a delicate balance to judge.

This week has been a bit different for me as DD4, our youngest child, begins her first week living away from home.  I have no children at home to prepare for school, rouse in the mornings, help prepare lunches for, or drive to school and other activities.  (At one point we had children in four different schools!)  The first week of school has been very hands off for me this year.  It is a very new experience to not send the kids off in the morning and then quiz them on it all later that afternoon while snacking on milk and cookies. 

Today was the first day that I actually called and talked to DD4 for a few minutes, as  I don't want to interfere too much with her adventures with her new roommates and classmates, but we have texted and/or emailed one another at least daily, usually several times a day.  I'm sure it will taper off as the weeks pass, but for now it is a blessing to have such instant ways to keep in touch, to know that she is doing ok, and that she has received the small package of items that were left behind when she moved . . . even though she was more excited about the expected package of text books that has not yet arrived!!

So, to my dear children . . . how am I doing???   And to other parents out there, how and how often do you communicate with your Young Adult children???


 

2 comments:

  1. Loved your post, and am so glad you are able to keep up with your daughter in her new life. I am still struggling with the balance of trying to stay connected while not interfering too much or sounding too needy! I still miss my children incredibly much, and thankfully they have allowed us to follow them on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram...and they do respond to text messages. We try not to call, but let them call us. Surprisingly, snail mail has emerged as a way for me to "chat" without taking too much of their time - they love getting the mail...and actually write back occasionally! A letter from them is a gift to treasure, for sure!

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    1. I wish that I were as faithful at sending snail mail letters to my kids as you seem to be. I really don't enjoy writing in longhand and avoid it as much as possible. I have tried sending fairly regular emails to my kids and will type a letter to mail to my parents about once a week or so to mail since they don't always remember to check their email. But it seems almost a waste of time to mail a letter to my kids when I can email them and they can read it almost immediately. But I do agree that physical letters are treasures to receive.

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