There seem to be a million and one blog posts about how kids these days are always on their phones or iPods/mp3 players. They are head down and not engaging in life. There are calls to throw out the tech and get into the fresh air. I agree with them so much in fact that I found myself judging another parent. We were in Target and about to check out. There was dad with a few kids. There was a teenager, a pre-teen, and one about in 2nd grade. The boy (pre-teen) placed earbuds in is ears and followed the family. My first reaction (I am sorry to say) was that of judgement. What the heck! Get those things out of your ears and engage with your family. Dad, seriously do something. Then I was convicted deep in my soul. The child was engaging. He was looking up. He was paying attention. He wasn’t head down and absorbed in his own little world.
He could be my son. My son doesn’t look like he has a disability. Yet he sometimes needs his drummers earplugs. No he isn’t a musician but they help keep the noise level down while still being able to hear sound. If someone saw my son with them on it would look like he is listening to music and tuning out the world. They would judge as I had.
What if this child was just like my son? What if he needed the music (or perhaps a podcast) to help him navigate a crowded store? I had no idea what the story was and I judged. I did the very thing I cringe at when it is directed toward my son. Just because one looks like a typical kid does not mean they live a typical life. So to the family in the store I am sorry.
Now I will be more purposeful in not stepping onto a soap box and I will give grace.
My God give you grace and patience. Keep on trailblazing.