WOODLAWN — A local mom has gone viral after sharing how she tracked down her 11-year-old daughter on an online game when the tween ignored her phone calls.
Last week, Chariel Watson called her daughter, Miracle, to remind her to take lasagna and garlic bread out of the freezer so it could thaw for dinner. But answering the phone would’ve ended Miracle’s session on her online game, Roblox — so she ignored her mom’s calls.
Instead of bothering with a voicemail, Watson went on Roblox and found Miracle just before the 11-year-old sped off in a virtual car. She was able to tell Miracle to thaw their dinner — and Miracle did pause to get out the lasagna and garlic bread.
Watson posted screenshots from the in-game conversation on Facebook, where they were shared widely.
“I just happened to screenshot it and post it to say, ‘Look what I’ve got to go through to get my daughter to answer the phone,’” said Watson, a lifelong South Sider. “I just thought it was funny and just a real-life moment that describes our relationship.”
The mother and daughter have a close bond and often play on Roblox together.
Watson had Mira when she was 19, and her partner died shortly before she found out she was pregnant, she said. The pair are so close that Watson’s sister says they could have their own TV show, Watson said.
“I always felt that having a relationship with her was really important because I’m her only parent, and bonding with my child is important to me,” Watson said. “When Roblox came out, my daughter was spending hours on there, so I was just like, ‘OK, let me be a part of her world.’”
In no time, Mira showed her mom everything she needed to know about playing Roblox, and it became a “great way to bond,” Watson said.
The mother-daughter duo play Roblox — a platform with hundreds of games — together “all the time,” so Watson didn’t think twice about logging in and teleporting to Mira’s character, she said.
While the lighthearted moment went viral, Watson doesn’t necessarily suggest it as a long-term strategy to get kids’ attention.
“I’d say to parents: Don’t just download Roblox to look for your kids and tell them what to do, but go in there to play some games with them and get to know your kids,” Watson said. “I didn’t realize my daughter was so computer savvy with the way she’s teaching me all these things. I’m always just looking at her like, ‘How did you learn this?’”
Watson is a comedian who frequently posts funny videos online about what’s going on in her life. She has gone viral a few times, but her Roblox post “takes the cake,” she said.
Watson hopes to become an actress and get more involved with stand-up comedy, so she’s always “thinking about ways to put myself out there,” Watson said.
“There’s no better way to go viral than with my daughter because she means everything to me,” Watson said. “Going viral for being a parent is so funny to me, but the reaction to this post gave me the confirmation I needed to get back into posting more frequently.”
Listen to “It’s All Good: A Block Club Chicago Podcast”: