Bridging Thousands of Miles: Skype

Each Sunday I do something besides go to church and get ready for the week ahead. Although the time might fluctuate I take out my cell phone, text the word “SKYPE” to my mom, and she connects with me through her tablet. Sitting on my couch with my lap top in front of me I eagerly anticipate her Skype call.

People ask me each day if I miss my family like heck and if I can possibly survive the chronic home sickness I must be feeling. I wholeheartedly understand where they are coming from but I do respond with the truth and let them know that while I love my family very much I am not killing myself just because I happen to be 3,000 miles away. As for the home sickness part let me ask you this question: If you moved from a cold, dreary climate to a place of endless sunshine, hot temperatures, and beautiful women would you be home sick? I didn’t think so.

A huge reason why I don’t think the long distance from home and the impossibility of seeing my family on a regular basis impacts me that much is in large part because of Skype. But back up for just one second. Understand that for the past seven years I lived in Montana. I lived a couple states over and a dangerous 200+ mile drive from my nearest relative. So for the past several years I didn’t see my family regularly either. During those Montana years I never once Skyped my mom while going months without seeing her or any of my other family. Now here in Myrtle Beach I get transported right into my living room each week. I know it sounds crazy but it almost seems like I am closer to home out in South Carolina than I was in Missoula.

I kind of wish I Skyped when I lived out west. I genuinely look forward to my Skype calls with my mom. Although the calls weren’t much fun for me before my mom actually understood the technology and could successfully activate her camera and speakers I now have delightful chats with her. It is always nice to see her face and I am not kidding when I say it feels like I am there. Many times my mom will take her tablet around the house or outside in the yard and show me different things. For the past couple weeks my dad has appeared on screen with my mom as well. In a true treat last week not only did I get to Skype with my mom and my dad but my sister’s cat also made an appearance.

Last week my sister's cat made an appearance in our Skype session.

Last week my sister’s cat made an appearance in our Skype session.

Skyping does give my mom a chance to dish out her motherly nags. The computer screen will somehow make my face look a little skinnier than what it actually is so my mom will tell me to eat more. The screen also has a way of making my face look darker (who am I kidding that is the actual complexion of my skin) so she will tell me to stay out of the sun. She will also tell me other things that I need to do or quit doing. These directions seem to hold more weight over a video call than just an audio call.

But of course these calls are much more than just my mom setting me straight. We catch up on our weeks. I show her around my apartment. We swap stories. I do something goofy on screen to make her laugh. We converse as if we are sitting right next to each other. For twenty minutes we talk like moms and sons do, totally forgetting the eternity that separates us.

Skype is an amazing technology that is responsible for the bridging of gaps thousands and thousands of miles wide. The service makes things easier and gives moms who worry about their sons some relief. I know whenever I want to see the face of my dear mom I can do so in a matter of seconds and I have to admit, that is pretty comforting. Don’t Blink.

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