Mothering in the Information Age
Same rules with different methods. That's the similarity and the difference between our mothers and us. When our mothers (particularly mine) would routinely nag us to wake up early, get ready for school, make our homework, clean our room, spend more time at home and just about anything, the gospel-like messages enter our right ear and goes out on the left. Sounds familiar?
Fast forward. When it was our fateful turn to become mothers, we found ourselves telling our lucky children the same life lessons our beloved mothers told us. Everyday. The content is the same but the context is different. The free TV had only four (4) channels (PTV,RPN,GMA, ABS) and can switch by turning the knob clockwise. Now with cable TV and more than fifty (50) channels to choose from, the ubiquitous remote control can easily bring us to the strangest places, make us laugh, cry, think or get angry in few seconds.
The entire family and the neighborhood used to listen to almost the same radio program everyday. News in the morning; a tear jerker drama before lunch; love songs and advice (Ito and Inyong Tia Dely) in the afternoon; and horror or fantasy (Gabi ng Lagim) before bedtime.
Books- printed, tangible, bound- were our refuge and major source of all things wise and wonderful (our Lord God made them all). Our parents are the authority. So it shall be written. So it shall be done.
Fast forward. Our children watches TV while updating their Facebook while chatting online while listening to music while surfing the internet while texting while we give them our ten cents worth. Can we let them sit still, their eyes transfixed to us, their face glowing and savoring every word we say?
Well, then, IT is it. Yes, I use the tools. I show my appreciation by clicking Like. I get to meet some of their friends online, too. I send messages on FB and mobile phone. And kiss and huggs both on and offline.
However, there is one rule that is non-negotiable. The dining table is sacred. Eating together is a celebration of God's blessing. Turn off the TV. "Get out of the PC". Eat Bulaga, NBA, Ophra and American Idol will have to wait. So it shall be written. So it shall be done.
Lastly, I have thought of a way to nag even if my Lolek will be living away from home. I prepared a powerpoint presentation (see attached) of my "sermon" complete with pictures. Saved it on his desktop so he can open the file easily. I presented "How to Enjoy University Years to the Max" while we were in a coffee shop. My reward - a long and tight hug and thank you from Lolek. In public.