If There was Starbucks

starbucks and iphones via lalalovelyblog

I sneak out to Starbucks  to type and write and find silence while sitting next to seventy five others having community and conversations all around me.  I’m pretty good about tuning out and tuning into my screen.  But, the other day I got sidetracked by strangers behind me.  Two teenagers, in pleated plaid school uniforms, holding hands across the table and mocha frappa frothy somethings held tightly in their other hands.  I wondered if they got dropped off after school, because they didn’t look old enough to drive themselves.

This reminded me of the week before when I was in line and another plaid clad girl wearing more makeup then me was double checking with the barista that her venti vanilla light latte was made correctly.  I tried not to stare at her young, perfectly painted face, and peer into her bright un-tired eyes, but I did – just for a quick second.  And, in that second I thought to myself, “what if there was Starbucks and cell phones when I was a teenager?”

starbucks and iphones via lalalovelyblog

I sneak out to Starbucks to type and write and find silence while sitting next to seventy five others having community and conversations all around me. I’m pretty good about tuning out and tuning into my screen. But, the other day I got sidetracked by strangers behind me. Two teenagers, in pleated plaid school uniforms, holding hands across the table and mocha frappa frothy somethings held tightly in their other hands. I wondered if they got dropped off after school, because they didn’t look old enough to drive themselves.

This reminded me of the week before when I was in line and another plaid clad girl wearing more makeup then me was double checking with the barista that her venti vanilla light latte was made correctly. I tried not to stare at her young, perfectly painted face, and peer into her bright un-tired eyes, but I did – just for a quick second. And, in that second I thought to myself, “what if there was Starbucks and cell phones when I was a teenager?”

What If I had grown up on the Internet; fueled by caffeine-free fancy coffee drinks?  I cringe at who my imagination colorfully re-creates.  Trina age twelve, 2.0.  Instead of typing notes on my typewriter (which was far more sophisticated than hand writing notes, à la elementary) I’d be texting them.  Sending them on Snapchat. Rather then chronicling my days in my private journal, I’d be posting my every five minutes, publicly.  My mom wouldn’t have had to show me how to apply mascara because hundreds of same aged strangers on YouTube would be there with their tutorials telling me all their tested tricks.  Feeling left out on a Friday night would not just be played out in my head, but in pictures on everyone else’s feed.  During the years when I was the most selfish, I would have been in the mirror taking SELFies.

I think about these things a lot, as I now have a jr. higher (middle schooler as we say these days).  I’ve been trying hard to channel my twelve year old self, lately.  To remember how I felt and how I thought.  What was important to me.  What I was afraid of.  I’m trying to remember more than just my big Aqua Net drenched hair and equally as big bad attitude.  What I’m trying to remember is the inner chit chat.  The chatter that never seemed to shut up.  I wonder if our chatter, hers and mine, is similar, very different, or the same?  With just a few details different like, Starbucks instead of Slushies.  Frappuccino for french fries.  And, texting over talking on the phone.  Some differences are big by the years gone by and technology taking us in different ways.  And, yet some ways are always, through the ages, the same.

Some days, I’d very much like to say no to Starbucks and confiscate the cell phone for always.  Let me show you about mascara and makeup.  But, this day and age requires that I teach my young ones how to maneuver the modern ways we communicate and commune.  We have talk and teach about the good, the bad, the balance.

Selfies, and Starbucks, sometimes.  Texting doesn’t replace talking.  And, photographs on social media don’t show the big picture.  Trying to act older doesn’t help you grow up any faster.  Because, when your age is older you realize your truest self is found in the ten year old you.

Do you ever think about your younger you?  You, then and a would be younger you, now?  Do you find that remembering helps you to be a better parent?  I’m no expert.  I’m learning to be a mother, just as my children are learning and growing up.  We learn and grow together.  One thing that remembering back affords me as a mother is compassion…..compassion and grace.  And, we could all use a little more of that during seasons of growth.

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Responses

  • Rachel from Rose Tinted Home
    Commented on May 7th, 2015 at 11:32am

    I love this reflection! We don’t have kids yet but honestly when I think about it sometimes I’m terrified of what it means to bring up kids today. I’m not all that old (ahem.. at least I like to think so).. but I remember having to call the house phone to ask for a play date.. playing in the woods for hours.. riding our bikes to the library.. or 7-11 if we had a few dollars to spend.. then my dad ringing a huge bell to let us know we had to come inside for dinner (yes really.. and no I did not grow up on a farm). I loved my childhood! I hope that kids today still get a glimpse of that from behind their cell phones and starbucks $5 venti mocha whatevers.

    Sigh.. one can hope!

    Have a lovely day!

    Rachel

  • Trina
    Commented on May 12th, 2015 at 2:38pm

    i remember all of that, too. well, minus the bell. But, I love that… I’ve often thought it would be fun to get a bell. Today, is just so different, and that makes me kind of sad. What is even scarier is thinking about what our kid’s kids technology will be like. you’ll be a great mom one day! xo . t

  • Brittany
    Commented on May 7th, 2015 at 2:28pm

    I’m not a mother, but I’m always a little bit unnerved by teenagers today compared to when I was one. I think you’re inevitably at your most self-absorbed and selfish during those years of your life, but it seems that type of attitude has hit an extreme lately! I feel like it has something to do with how much is available right at the tip of their fingertips now, they have access to anything they can imagine. Compared to to “back in the day” when you kind of made do and enjoyed what you had. I think disconnecting now and then needs to be an important lesson for kids of any age, and hopefully if the day comes that I’m having children I’ll be able to do that for them. In the meantime I will just observe from afar, and turn my phone off every now and then!

    Brittany

  • Trina
    Commented on May 12th, 2015 at 2:42pm

    Yes! I think there has to be defined guidlines when it comes to screen time for kids. Kids and teengers just don’t have the capcity to know when it’s too much. And, sometimes adults – me included, at times. It’s good to have others around you to kindly remind you to– put the phone down :) That not everything has to be captured through a camera lens….some things are better captured by the heart.

  • dawn
    Commented on May 9th, 2015 at 11:44am

    hi miss trina … yes i do think of my younger me and all that influenced my thoughts … i was a bit of an outsider, certainly not in the in crowd … having just gotten my girl from college yesterday (end of year 1) i believe the very most important thing to do for kids ( of all ages) is listen, as they get older try to keep reactions lowkey and allow them to talk no matter what you are doing, because if the moment passes it may never come up again … and yes it is such a different world … so true … compassion and grace xx

  • Trina
    Commented on May 12th, 2015 at 2:46pm

    Hi Dawn. Yes, I’m learning this with my 12 year old and need to get better at it. My mom kindly reminded me the other day about not just listening, but listening and not reacting or making too many facial expressions (ha- I have an expressive face). Thank you for words of wisdom! xo . t

  • Weekend Thoughts / 18 | Eat Up, Buttercup
    Commented on May 10th, 2015 at 10:19am

    […] loved Trina’s post where she wonders what she would have been like if Starbucks and Instagram and cell phones were […]

  • Trina
    Commented on May 12th, 2015 at 2:46pm

    thank you!

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