My children’s schools have a rule that during school performances we are discouraged from recording or filming the experience. At first, I felt the urge to record the loud buoyant singing and hand clapping, but allowed myself to comply and melt into the moment.
As I swayed and smiled, my phone stayed in my pocket, camera in my bag. I waited patiently for the authorized end of the program for photos and wondered if I would forget moments I wanted to capture. But what I noticed that was pleasing and telling is the delight the children felt as they were enjoyed, not distracted by finding the right camera to smile with, and could feel us leaning in and being with them. They felt seen and heard, while the level of distraction was at a minimum. I sensed, the one likely to gain from our mindfulness isn’t just ourselves, but those who find themselves being fully appreciated.
And though it may take restraint to not capture all moments on film or digital footprints, the memorable emotion of being held in that moment is one that is not soon forgotten. And what a wonderful time when we are done soaking it in, and they are ready to stop and smile 🙂