You’ve got your outfit picked; you’ve made your sign; you’ve hired a photographer; and you’ve cleaned the house from top to bottom (twice) in preparation for your solider’s homecoming. But something you may not have considered is planning an unplugged homecoming.
I’m sure you’ve heard of unplugged weddings, or unplugged births, or other “unplugged” events… meaning that you leave your phone at home, in the car, or somewhere not your hand. But so many of us don’t think about having an unplugged homecoming. While smartphones are great for communicating during deployment, they can take away from “the moment” your soldier comes home.
It takes away from the suspense. Getting minute by minute updates of your soldier’s every move not only distracts you from the beauty of the beginning of the ceremony, but also takes away from the build up of your reunion. You’re looking at your phone, talking to your solider, or family members and friends who are anxiously awaiting your reunion just as you are. You’re tied down, answering questions, asking questions of your own, and are continually looking at the clock, making the minutes go slower and slower.
However, this choice is completely yours. I have gotten some beautiful moments with cell phones in hand. The moment your soldier texts you “we landed” or “we’re on post.” Those can be just as amazing as having your phone away.
My advice? Go ahead and bring your phone in if you’re bringing your purse or you have pockets. Text your soldier when you get settled into your seat, letting him know where you’re at in the crowd, and if you’re planning on staying put or running to them… Update your social media if you must. Text your in-laws or anyone else you need to keep informed. Then, put it away. Let me take the photos. Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat can wait until the end of the ceremony. Don’t stress about keeping everyone up to date every single minute. They can wait too. And I promise I’ll get better photos of you and your soldier than you will with your front facing camera and selfie stick. Let me do the work. Keep the phone out of the way, and enjoy the moment unplugged.
Even still, there will be plenty more people with phones and cameras. These moments will be documented. You don’t have to worry about that. Allow yourself to just be present and enjoy the moments that are about to unfold. It will be worth it ♥︎