The Twindigs’ birthday is June 5th. This year, after being sick with an infection the weekend before, I decided it was best to withdraw from the Rome Diamond League meet on June 5th and celebrate my babies’ birthday while getting my strength back. We went to Legoland and had a blast! It was great to be able to be home with them.
Typically around the time of their birthdays, I’m traveling overseas to compete and promising them I will make it up to them later for missing their big day. Talk about a mother’s guilt! Thank God for technology, though. Some people look at me crazy when I tell them that each of the Twindigs have their own iPad mini’s. I get it – there was a time when I wouldn’t have dreamt of spending money on that kind of electronic device for them at such a young age, but desparate times call for desparate measures!
The truth is, traveling for long periods of time without seeing my boys and without them seeing me is really hard on us all. There is no way around it. I remember traveling to Germany to see a highly recommended doctor there to help me with a nagging injury I couldn’t shake. Initially he told me that two weeks would be plenty of time to get me back on the track. My body didn’t respond like he thought it would, so I ended up having to stay an additional two weeks. I had already been in Europe for quite awhile before I even came to him, so hearing him say I had to stay longer was the straw that broke the camel’s back (my spirit). I broke down crying right there in his office.
Skype was initially how I video-chatted with the twins. This helped a ton, but it also meant having to find a place to sit down and get connected to internet somewhere. In Europe, you don’t just waltz into a Starbucks and immediately have fast wifi! Each country and area within each country is different, so you just never know. With the iPad mini’s, I can call them on the spot via Facetime, and they can do the same. I taught them how to search through their contacts (all three of them), look for “Mommy,” and place a FaceTime call. Basically, it’s their phone!
They’ll call me to get a tour of whatever country I’m in at the time. It’s turned out to be a great geography teaching tool! Or they will just call and say “what are you doing, Mommy?” I eat every bit of “face time” with them up – I’m one of those moms who wants to hear every detail about their day…especially when I wasn’t there to chaffeur them through it!
It’s safe to say I am “Team iPad” for kids. While it is so hard to be away from them so much, especially in the summer, we try to turn it into a positive, which is to let them in on Mommy’s travels around the world and let them see it firsthand.