My 14 year old daughter went to her friend Elizabeth’s birthday party recently and her Mom greeted the guests at the door with a basket to drop off their electronics as they entered. Lyana had to add her phone to the pile. She was shocked and appalled. In retelling this story to me, she was filled with empathy for “poor” Elizabeth.
“If you ever did that, Mom, I’d be so mad at you!”
Lyana described the first five minutes of the party as torturous. The boys and girls just stood around and stared at each other. ”It was soooooo awkward!”
Can you imagine the whining protestations that Elizabeth’s Mom had to contend with in advance? “Mom, none of my friend’s parents do that! You can’t be serious! You can’t take their phones! Forget it! I don’t want a party anymore. My friends will never want to come here again!”
But her Mom held firm and guess what happened? ”Games, Mom! We played games for hours! Can you believe that?” Lyana was absolutely incredulous. She described talking and laughing and game playing like it was some remnant of a pre-historic ritual.
I asked her (as casually as I could), “So, did you have fun?”
“Yeah, it was awesome!”
She paused before backpedaling,”Don’t get any ideas, though.”