It has been two months since my last blog post. Now that I’m “back” from my long absence, let me tell you the story of how I survived 2 weeks without a mobile phone. When people learn this fact they usually react with an exclamation of shocked disbelief, as if I lead some sort of unfathomable existence of unmitigated depravation.
It all started when my phone slipped off my hand and fell flat on the screen and the screen cracked into 100 pieces. Okay, that was a bit exaggerated, but those were dirty cracks and I forbade myself from using it even though the phone was fully functional. The little spider cracks have left it so the glass cuts into my fingers at times because it’s so fine. Also I assumed that the cracks would emit radiation which would give me cancer. I did get upset every time I looked at the cracked screen and wondered why bad things happen to good people.
So there I was without a working mobile. I didn’t replace it right away. I wasn’t trying to abandon technology or get back to basics or go on some natural retreat. Display screens were out of stock from the most trustable mobile repair centers so I had to wait till one of those places brought in a stock of screens. It was hard, coping without the beautiful piece of metal.
I am slowly walking around in a mobile phone paradise. I take my phone out of my bag. 67 new alerts. 3 Viber messages. 10 new followers on twitter. 5 @mentions. 32 people re-tweeted my tweet. I’m famous! I am a Goddess amongst mere mortals in the digital age. A Queen in a digital paradise.
That was a bit exaggerated, too. Woefully, I do not get that much re-tweets and followers every day. Also, I lose one or two followers occasionally. What did I ever do to them? I’m sure that my tweets are very entertaining.
Back to the sorry state I had been without my mobile phone, or The Survival of Eama Without Her Mobile.
I was completely lost without a phone. There’s was feeling somewhere inside that I was missing something, a sense of insecurity sometimes prevails. The first couple of days, I was missing it dearly. (Also, note the fact that I am talking about my mobile phone, not a lost child). I missed reaching for it every morning as a first thing without even brushing my teeth to check Viber, Twitter and Instagram. I missed the people I used to text daily and the way it lights up whenever I receive a notification. Above all, I missed the long, lengthy messages from my boyfriend.
I had just one mode to contact with people, which was Twitter, since my Facebook was deactivated too. Unfortunately, Twitter does not permit a message to be longer than 140 characters. My life had been a wreck.
Whenever I went out, the hours were a struggle. A struggle because there was typically no mobile phone service or internet. It was odd, and almost unbearable.
Well, not really. It wasn’t a big loss.
Every time I try to get some sort of work done, I end up thinking about where my mobile phone was in relation to my work. It would be just a few inches away and face up so that a text could be easily spotted and replied to. Sometimes I keep it face down, in silent mode or out of sight so that I won’t be distracted, but then I check it every minute just in case I get a text.
Without my mobile phone, I was able to concentrate more without multitasking.
After the withdrawal from the digital world, life was kind of peaceful. There was no phone, or distraction that stopped me from what I had been doing and shifted my focus. When I was with my family, I did not bury myself into the digital cesspool. I was forced to interact with my surrounding environment. I suddenly become aware of everything around me. I gave undivided attention to my grandma every time she talked to me without glancing surreptitiously down at the corner of the table to check the notifications. I managed to be a good companion for other humans the past couple of weeks.
Without my mobile phone, I realized that it’s pretty annoying and gross; I could talk to someone for hours and realize that the person is in fact so ignorant that they are too busy to pay attention to what is literally right in front of their eyes.
My skull was cancer-free for 2 weeks. Don’t kid yourself. Go Google ‘mobile phones’ and ‘brain tumors’. Proceed to piss your pants.
So, when I have my phone, I can call anyone I know at any time, and that’s so convenient for me, right? Well, it isn’t. I receive calls from unknown callers and numbers I sure want to avoid for the rest of my life, but they know that they can call me and wherever I am, even if I don’t pick up, they have asserted their presence as a part of my day. My phone might start ringing while in the middle of a hide-and-seek game while I’m hiding in the laundry basket. Now that’s NOT convenience.
Without my phone, I was able to hide in a closet because the people I was robbing came home early. That was completely random.
During this process, I got to identify the most important people in my life and I realized that no matter what happens, one way or another, I would keep in touch with them. Even if it’s through 140 characters or a word limit of 1000, I did contact them and did not abandon them.
But upon a bit of reflection, I’m not entirely sure that my mobile is a good thing.