If there is one profound lesson I will carry forward from 2012, it is the knowledge that miracles still do exist and occur every day. Perhaps we just don’t recognize them as such because we have become blinded by the abundance of amazing (yes, I’m using amazing as a noun) in mundane and expected events.by
Today this knowledge created a profound and happy two hours. Our son, Adam Stephens, lives and works in Calgary, Alberta with his wonderful girlfriend, Crystal Andrushko. Our daughter, Kelly Stephens, lives and works in Toronto with her gentle man, Ulysses Viello. We are separated by 2700 kilometres.
And yet today, through the free and amazing technology provided by Google+ Hangouts, all six of us were able to gather over coffee, spinach shakes and assorted beverages as though we were sitting together under one roof. Cats came into and out of each others’ living-rooms. Porch decorations were revealed, dracena Christmas trees shared, giggles and news, thoughts and hopes all passed back and forth.
And somehow the distance closed. It was as though we were together, and it wasn’t until it was time to say our farewells and go our own ways that the ache of not being physically together became obvious. There were virtual hugs, no shared warmth of bodies. And yet for that absence a poignant and significant reminder that because of modern technologies this family, separated by enormous distances, was able to come together for a sizeable period of time in a real and tangible manner.
No longer the long wait for letters to cross countries. No longer the uncertainty of facial expression while chatting on a phone. We were together, laughing, watching silly actions while men-folk poked women-folks’ noses.
And the miracle of this technology today has become profound.
It makes me wonder what marvels there will be 30 years hence, when I am 87. Will our son and daughter’s families be able to be with us as holographic images, or will some sort of animatronic temporary clone be able to press flesh? Will the globe truly shrink so that distance and time are no longer relevant?
I cannot wait. It’s like being a kid again, waiting for a legendary figure in red to find his way into your home with an unimagined gift of wonder.
But for today, Google+ Hangout gave this family a gift beyond value. There are miracles. You just need to know how to see them.