I see my daughter’s face on the laptop screen. I focus on her smile. I can even see that she’s doing well and enjoying herself. It kills me though knowing that I can’t hug her or hold her by the shoulders and tell her that I’m proud of her for giving her best.
I try to speak, but words don’t come. I remind myself that we both have things to do and that I better get moving.
Next, a few minutes later, I text my son, but I’m not sure when he’ll see the message or be able to text back. I pass along a meme that I know he’ll appreciate, but when I read the text again, I second guess if the humor translates to his current situation or if it’s even that funny. I close my eyes and shake my head.
My daughter and son are both doing their own thing. They’re a spin and a whirl of the globe away from us, and, most times, I’m happy for them. They’re doing great things. They’re serving others and having the time of their lives. I thank God for watching over them and tell myself to stay out of their way and let them do their own thing.
I praise technology for helping take the sting away.
In the grand scheme of things, I can’t imagine being in this same position a decade or even a few years ago. Minus the video and audio communications, I would have been lost.
More on the challenge of being apart:
However, as great as our current day technology is, I still find it lacking.
Most of the time it’s great, it works perfectly. It does what it says it will do: it cuts the miles down to size and brings us together. But then there are other times, when I see my grown kid’s faces on the laptop or on the phone screen and miss them so much that it hurts. They’re right there in front of me. They’re so close, yet so far away. I want to reach out and touch them . . . but I can’t. These are the moments that are the toughest to bear, the toughest to withstand.
I struggle, but I fall back on the same thing I’ve always done. I tell myself to toughen up and that I’m fortunate to have had the good times and to remain strong in my belief that the good times will return again, in due time.
In short, I tell myself to toughen up.
“Toughen up Brian, toughen up.”