Smile at the Camera *Flash*!

Memories…

flash - neverendingThere’s this old movie – The Neverending Story – that they used to show on GTV somewhere in the ’90s on Sunday afternoons. In the Sequel, a boy enters this fantasy world and acquires a medallion that grants various wishes. The twist, however, is that the baddie makes it such that with every wish, he forgoes a personal memory. It reaches a point somewhere down the line where he has just 2 left – of his mother and father – and then, in order to save the life of someone he gives up the memory of his mother with another wish.

That movie made me realise for the first time the immense importance of memories to us as people – they form our beings just as surely as every morsel of food we take in daily.

But this brings me to a conundrum: as we advance, humanity finds better and better ways of safeguarding this memory. Disposable cameras gave way to Polaroids, then digital cameras have progressively been giving way to the latest flagship smartphone in our quest to preserve the moments.

Technology steps in to save us, but at a cost which I’m guilty of also. Flipping through the 35+ Gb archive of pictures on my laptop accrued over the last decade or so, I realised the biggest mistake we’ve been routinely making.

In wanting to preserve the Moments for Tomorrow, we forget to fully Live through them Today.

Keep these thoughts in mind at the next wedding you’re at, or funeral, or birthday celebration or graduation. You don’t need to stop taking the pictures, but just for a second, pause…and take time to actually experience the Event:

It’s a wedding, your best mate is beginning this great journey – a selfie for Instagram can wait a few minutes while you hug her goodbye and whisper a heartfelt blessing into her ear, can’t it?

flash - grandmaIt’s your grandmother’s funeral – Nana won’t be sitting at the steps leading into the family house just enjoying the sea breeze the next time you pass through your hometown. Let the grief and loss wash over you for once as you contemplate the weight of a soul leaving this mortal coil, one dear to you. Posing with cousins, aunts and uncles for that perfect shot can wait as you pay your last respects.

It’s all happiness and joy because your son is 1 year old today. Heck, even he himself is not as impressed with the anniversary as you are – why fill up social media with all your ‘Baby @ 1’ pictures when you didn’t even hug him tight that morning to say an earnest prayer for him as God continues keeping him on Earth?

flash - gradYou finally graduate from Law School after numerous late night sessions, trails, resits and difficult examiners. Your whole family hires a bus to come to your graduation ceremony. ‘Behind-Behind’s First Lawyer’ they’re calling you now, but you can’t wait to take pictures with the Chief Justice, the Vice Chancellor, the Minister for Education and the X of Y. You seem to have forgotten their contribution to your fees all this while was way South of 1.00GHS, unlike the unwavering support of your family through it all.

All these are perfect opportunities to Create and Enjoy new memories, instead of wrapping them up for preservation in digital plastic wrap.

So. The next time you whip out your smartphone (plus or minus filters – smh!) ask yourself critically if you’re not inadvertently robbing yourself of a genuine Experience which will be converted into a Valuable Memory once you have enjoyed it fully in the Present.flash - odd

If you honestly, really, really don’t think so, take a pose (no pouting please!) and say cheese!

 

…Tele 😉

PS: Don’t keep! Share…& then subscribe, okay :-)? 

11 Comments

  1. Aure said:

    Very nice and good advice

    August 24, 2016
    Reply
    • Tele said:

      Merci beaucoup, Aure

      August 24, 2016
      Reply
  2. Awenatey said:

    You couldn’t have said it any better. As my bro likes to say, “3ny3 de3 ehia nono!” We love to capture photos of every moment and forget to actually savour the moment. We often forget that putting the phone down for a minute to reflect on the occasion to the fullest creates an even deeper memory which will remain with us for a long time to come! Well said. Keep it up!

    August 24, 2016
    Reply
    • Tele said:

      Lol! I like your brother’s reasoning, Awenatey. It’s a notion that occurred to me one day cus I was sad about taking a few dud pics at a function – I missed the experience & the pics in one fell swoop 🙁
      Teaching moment right there…

      August 24, 2016
      Reply
  3. Alby said:

    Thanks for this reminder. It really is better to enjoy the precious moments we experience.

    August 24, 2016
    Reply
    • Tele said:

      You’re welcome, Alby. Precious moments matter most indeed 🙂

      August 24, 2016
      Reply
  4. MayD said:

    Hmm…asem o. This new technology craze…
    You have said it…folks, let’s enjoy the actual moments, not the photos afterwards…

    August 24, 2016
    Reply
    • Tele said:

      This technology thing, eh? Double-edged sword…
      Moments>Photos

      August 24, 2016
      Reply
  5. Paintsiwaa said:

    You have put it so right, Tele! Recently saw a post from a photographer on how people need to put down their phones for the official ones, so that in the future, when you go through them, you won’t end up seeing everyone holding his/her phone (which will probably be outdated). My worry wasn’t even about that, it was about how these days, we don’t take part in events….physically present but our thoughts are all on the pictures we will take and how good it will look on social media. It’s actually my wish to ask people not to use their phones at my wedding… Hahahaha.

    I’m so much in love with this post of yours!!!!

    August 24, 2016
    Reply
    • Tele said:

      Paintsiwaa, ikr? Once people start respecting society’s finer points of courtesy, I’m sure we’ll all be free to enjoy every fine point of life in relative peace.
      (Don’t forget to drop us an invite to the wedding o 😉 )

      August 24, 2016
      Reply
      • Paintsiwaa said:

        Ha! I shall definitely send it, hopefully in 2 or 3 years time. Lol

        August 25, 2016
        Reply

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