I had been going through emails and responding for about 20 mins, giving the odd look up to see where my daughter was at on the floor. All of a sudden my phone cut out and said I had reached my data limit (silent blessing in disguise) because what happened next was a wake up call for me.
I happened to put my phone down and I looked to my right at all the other parents sitting in the viewing gallery that over looks the gymnastics floor. What I noticed, shocked me.
There was every single mum, head down, doing stuff on their phone. Now no judgment here, I don't know if they were responding to emails like me or just having a look at Facebook, messaging a friend. But what I also noticed was the 2 ladies who were looking out to the floor watching the kids. These two ladies were elderly ladies there with their grandkids.
What I saw was they never took their eyes off the kids. They didn't feel the need to check a phone. They were there to watch their grandkids.
I instantly put my phone away, looked around for my daughter, I spotted her on the rope and my instant thought was "shit, she is up so high", then I see her look at me and the biggest smile was on her face, all because she saw that I was looking at her. When she got down I gave her 2 thumbs up, that smile got bigger. What I saw next was her make her way around the circuit on the gymnastics floor, but this time she took her time, she did all her tumbles, jumps and beams perfectly, giving me a big smile each time she did it.
She run over to me at the end, the most excited I've ever seen her (it's sometimes a big ask to get her there) and said "did you see me do the beam? Did you see me do the jump over that horse?". I kept saying yes, yes you did fantastic.
As we were driving home, she said she loved gymnastics today. When I asked why she said it was because she could show me what she has learnt. I said but I see you doing your gymnastics each week. She said "no you don't mummy, every time I look at you, your on your phone!"...Daggers to my heart, that is what she is seeing and it makes her feel like I don't care.
I made a promise to myself and to her that from now on I will leave my phone in the car. She had that huge big smile again and simply said "thank you mummy" and looked out the window, still smiling.