My kid wanted an I-Pod 5 for Christmas. Before this he wanted a new computer for Christmas. But, then his only waking thought became an I-Pod 5. My kid is 9-years-old. He asked me many times. He sent me links to where I could get an I-Pod 5. He told his Granma that he wanted an I-Pod 5 for Christmas.
My son-in-law also wanted an I-pod. He’s 24. But he did not ask for one for Christmas. I just knew he wanted one since he had lost his I-Pod that he purchased three years ago.
My twins, age 15, have I-pods, second generation. And all of their friends and many of my 9- year-olds friends have I-pods of various generations, my 9-year-old reminds me constantly. In fact, these kids have I-Everythings. I-Pods. I-Pads. I-Phones. You name the I, they have it.
I hesitated as I pictured my son addicted to more electronics, like he needs help in that department. Another thing for me to take away from him, or to be frustrated with, that it is consuming him. I want to try to keep my son young for as long as possible, if that is even possible with four older siblings. My husband agreed that our 9-year-old does not need an I-Pod. He needs to focus on reading and creating and other things, like, oh yeah, playing outside. The I-Pod will take over his life, we both agreed.
Then I was at Target and just for fun asked the salesperson to show me the I-pods, and as he guides me to the I-Pod section in the store, he begins talking about the I-Pod 4 and how for about half the price, I should consider the I-Pod 4. The salesperson was very convincing; telling me one of the only differences was the addition of Siri, a voice-command option. The guy was convincing, so I bought one for my son-in-law, and thought about one for my 9-year-old after all.
But, when I got home and fished around for comments on how my 9-year-old felt about the I-Pod 4, he said, “no way, that one sucks.” Got to love the honesty of 9-year-olds. (Now you see the language in our real-life household used by my fourth grader. I’d rather have nothing, he informs me.)
Oh? He said, he’d save up on his own to buy the 5. Or wait till his March birthday.
Okay. What have I done here as a mom?
When I asked my daughter what her husband, my son-in-law, would think about the I-Pod 4, rather than the I-Pod 5, he was fine about it. He did not need the I-Pod 5.
Hmm. Comparing the two generations. This young generation of kids wants the best and the newest and the most elaborate techy things.
Reminds me of another conversation I had with my 9-year-old around the phone I own. That conversation went something like this:
“Mom, I’m really embarrassed,” my 9-year-old says to me.
“Why?” I ask.
“It’s your phone. It’s really old. Why don’t you have an I-Phone?”
“Well, I don’t really need an I-Phone and I don’t want to pay the 30 dollars per month data fee since I do most of my internet research on my articles from home on my computer where I have all the data I need,” I reason with him.
“But, it’s just so embarrassing seeing you with your old phone. Even the neighbor has an I-Phone and he doesn’t make as much money as we do. It shows we are poor,” my 9-year-old concludes.
Okay, so that is how my 9-year-old views the technology we have at home. It’s about status and what that represents to the world.
When I told my pediatrician (who’s a friend of mine) at my kid’s next appointment about this comment from my son, she laughs and pulls out her phone, which is even older than mine. It does not even have a 26-letter keyboard on it like I have.
So, the kid got no I-Pod, no I-Pod 4, no I-Pod 5, no I-Anything for Christmas. He got a coin counter and Star Wars Legos and an airplane making kit and a basketball and an automatic umbrella (so, there’s a few techy things after all). And my son-in-law got the I-Pod 4, but we don’t tell my 9-year-old since we don’t want any comments from him, or any comparing, even though he made it clear he did not want an I-Pod 4 anyway.
My 9-year-old eventually figures out we gave his brother-in-law the I-Pod 4 and now he wishes he had one after all.
But after a few days that wears off. And, my 9-year-old is in his bedroom, using his coin sorter to count money and building forts with his friends and crafting Star Wars ships out of his Lego set, and he’s outside playing basketball with his new basketball he also got.
That is working for now.
He does remind me that his 10th birthday is coming up and that is where we can “focus all the money on him.” Man, this kid is smart.
And wishing for what he might get for his 10th birthday.