Cell phones

I hate phones. Hate, hate, hate them. And I say that despite the thousand ways having a cell phone has benefitted me. I say that despite the bajillion pictures I've taken of my cute baby with my cell phone. I say that even as I write this blog post from my cell phone. That is how much I hate them.
Sometimes I think I was just born into the wrong generation. Sometimes I feel like maybe I should have been born in the 1800's so I could wear big foofy dresses and Oreos wouldn't exist (and therefore couldn't tempt me, so I'd be more likely to fit into my corset) and cell phones wouldn't even be thought about. It sounds perfect until I remember sewage also ran freely through the streets, and then I'm like, ok no thanks.
But it's almost worth it. I almost hate cell phones that much. 
The problem, I guess, isn't the phones. It's the fact that everyone from my 10 year old neighbor to my grandma is addicted to them. (No offense, grandma. I'm just assuming. You always text back right away, so I know your phone is nearby. I hope I'm still the favorite after this.) 
I was one of the few in High School who didn't get a cell phone for a really long time. My parents made me pay my own cell phone bill, so even though I always had a job, I wasn't willing to spend my meager pay checks on a phone bill that, back then, was pretty ridiculous considering you could only talk on nights and weekends and every time you accidently clicked the "internet" button you'd have to frantically click end because that was a luxury you couldn't afford.
Back then, when I was one of few of my friends that didn't have a phone, it was always annoying when everyone would be texting instead of paying attention to everyone we were with. (Although I have to admit, when I finally got a phone, I texted a LOT, and I'm sure I did my fair share of ignoring friends.)
But now, it's so much more than just texting. There are endless, completely mindless things we can do on our phones to distract us from reality. That's part of the reason I gave up Instagram and Snapchat a year ago, and even though I still have my fair share of distractions, I have been SO glad to be rid of those. I can't tell you how annoying it is when I'm hanging out with someone and they obsessively take pictures of themselves, themselves with the food they ordered, with my dog, with my baby, etc. (that's right... You know who you are!)
I know I'm not a genius here for discovering this first. We are all aware what a problem it can be, and yet few seem to care. I am not exaggerating when I say it is rare these days for me to have even a short conversation with someone that isn't, in some way, interrupted by a phone. I can't stand it when I'm trying to talk to someone and they are mindlessly scrolling through Facebook. I've started saying random things when I know they aren't listening: "so I'm hoping my unicorn will be back from the shop tomorrow so I can ride it to school." Most people just nod and smile and pretend to listen. 
Are you starting to see why I hate, hate cell phones?
Because usually, usually whatever you're doing on there can wait. Because if you need to make a phone call or send a text, I understand. When you are carrying on another conversation with someone who is not in the room with us, I don't understand. And frankly, let's just say it: it's rude.
But what really gets me about it is that it seems to get worse with every generation: Dayen is already so surrounded with it that even at 9 months old, he is fascinated with phones. (And I'm sure it has nothing to do with the fact that I'm constantly sticking my phone in his face trying to get him to smile.) He already reaches for our phones and sobs when we wont give it to him, even though we've never let him play with them before. 
Sure, right now he just wants to eat them. But really, what message is he getting when everyone he knows and loves is constantly glued to those little devices he doesn't understand? What is he going to think when he gets older and it's hard to get moms attention when he does a cool trick because she's staring at that tiny screen?
I accept that our phones connect us to friends and loved ones, people we haven't seen for years and people we'd otherwise never talk to again. I know that the Internet connects us to nearly all the knowledge ever known to man, and that we can do worthwhile and incredible things with the tiny phone we carry in our pockets. 
But, speaking for myself at least, MOST of what we do our phones is time wasting and meaningless. The games we spend hours progressing on we will soon give up. The pictures we scroll through will be forgotten. Even the pins we pin and intend to bring to life, we generally don't. 
That's why I finally got so fed up with my phone, and really with everyone else and their phones, that I decided to give it up. At least, as much as possible. Id like to "downgrade" my phone and have nothing but calls and texts, but Caleb (who thinks im slightly crazy) reminds me to not make any rash decisions. Because I want to focus my time and attention on things that last, things that matter. 
And of course, I'm not telling you what to do. But just know the next time we're hanging out and you are pretending to listen to me while you play FarmVille (is that still a thing?) I am kicking you in my mind.