Creating Experience and Telling Stories

We went bowling today. I’m not the next Lebowski – my ball spent more time in the gutter than it did on the lane- but between the delicious Garlic and Parmesan wings, flossing, dropping it like it was lukewarm, and the laughs, I had a really good time.

What I didn’t do was take pictures. In this straight-to-Instagram culture we can spend a lot of time taking pictures, setting up the perfect shot to ensure that we have documentation of the fun that is happening around us while we take photos. My child is going to be 13 this year and I love capturing photos of their preteen innocence. But to do so, I would have to sit on the sidelines.

Instead, I chose to jump in and participate.

After, we went to a Boba Tea shop where we could get a nice dessert and relax. I don’t like boba. The gel-like balls that sit in the bottom of the tea are a texture that I can only describe as gummy torture. Instead, I had a Vietnamese Pour-over, which is the strongest coffee ever brewed with condensed milk. Let’s just say that Red Bull’s got nothing on this stuff. We played Scrabble while we sipped and laughed at the ridiculousness of one of the employees who gave my husband a look like he had single-handedly destroyed the universe. And still I did not snap a photo!

On the way home we shared stories of my Father-in-Law, who died when the Tornado was three. He LOVED them immensely and they always brought a smile to his face. We lived with him and my Mother-in-Law when the Tornado was born. Thanks to Poppy’s arms and willingness to hold his grandchild and rock them to sleep, I was able to take daily showers. My husband worked overnights and I was often alone to parent. Thanks to Poppy I was able to stay sane. It was nice to reminisce about him and while Tornado doesn’t remember the details, they do remember his love.

It’s easy to go days without leaving the house when working for a distributed company. Because I work from home and am a homebody, I have to make a special effort to leave the house. Sometimes that means going to a co-working space, or out to eat. Other times, just walking to the mailbox is enough. Whatever we do, I am making the choice to leave my phone off and out of the way. The documentation is in our memories and the stories will last forever.

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