The church I serve is blessed to have one of the top preschool programs in the area. These past two mornings I have attended their “Pumpkin Parade” of costumes and singing. And, of course, where children are costumed and singing, there are parents with cameras. I am quite sure several hours of video were shot during the 40 minute program.
I had my own camera, actually my phone’s camera mode, ready, too, though I learned the Parent’s Day Out kids didn’t parade.
So many of us had our phones out, it really got me to thinking. It looks something like a barrier. Small barrier though it is, When we focus on photographing or videoing our children, we are, in fact, putting something between ourselves and them.
Then there is the challenge of getting the right shot. I know there have been times in my own life I have been so bent on getting just the right shot I missed sharing the joy of the moment with my child.
To be sure some of those shots taken or minutes recorded will be shared with grandparents, other family, and friends. Some will, of course, come up at that 4 year old’s rehearsal dinner way on down the road. The vast majority will languish forever on the cloud somewhere – if they survive at all.
Is it worth it? Is the disconnection from our children in the moment worth the connection we envision these pictures and videos bringing us years from now? We may not know for awhile. I am rather sure, though, that when this Most Captured Generation Ever grows up a little, we will hear about it.
In the meantime, I am feeling pretty sure I need to learn to put the electronic capturing device down and re-learn to connect with my children in the present.