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I’ve gone on walks and runs with my daughters, and the older one often rides her bike ahead and waits to allow us to catch up. Sometimes she forgets about us and keeps riding. That can be scary – usually just for the parents.
A few years ago, that led to my wife and I sprinting down the sidewalk, trying to catch up. Our frightened screams for her attention were easily drowned out by the neighborhood noise of cars and more.
Everything turned out okay and we caught up with her. Those were the good ole days. LOL. That phrase has to go. Today is so much better.
Years later, I went on a run while my daughter was riding ahead. She was getting a ways ahead. I didn’t need to panic. I just messaged her from my Apple Watch. She was carrying her iPhone.
She basically stopped immediately. Technology – when used well – can make our lives better, safer and more effective.
That leads me to another question: What’s the right age for children to get their own phone?
The right answer for us was age nine. There were enough activities happening that would make a phone useful.
I remember when I was growing up and my mom was running quite a bit behind picking me up. I was just standing there. Waiting. I had no phone. I didn’t even know what a cell phone was. In those days, we would use pay phones – paid with coins – or knock on somebody’s door to ask if we could use their phone, which likely was hanging on the wall in the kitchen. The good ole days – I guess.
Today, we have old iPhones lying around and she can just use one of those. Verizon Wireless quickly added another line on the older phone. The monthly charge was relatively minimal. So we got her a phone, and now we group text when we aren’t near each other. We talk face to face when we are near each other! Just saying. ?
She also has GPS turned on so if I ever need to find her, I can ping her phone. That’s so much easier than running from neighbor to neighbor, for example.
Technology can help us tell better and more efficient stories, and sometimes it can be the story worth sharing. Let’s not belittle it. Let’s use it how it can be useful.