Thursday, January 12, 2012

an inadvertent technology detox

A couple days ago, I lost my phone.

And when I say, "lost," I mean L - O - S - T.
I mean that it's gone.  Forever.
I mean that I'm pretty sure it evaporated into thin air, or maybe got caught up in a black hole, or found it's way to the Bermuda triangle, or more likely it dropped out of my coat pocket and into the recycling bin, which means by now it's probably an Odwalla bottle.

All I know is that somewhere between my car and my house -- between my car and my house -- my phone absolutely and positively disappeared.

My first reaction?  Crazy, frantic searching high and low.
My second reaction?  Withdrawal.  Strange, uncontrollable withdrawal.

The withdrawal really freaked me out, considering that I've never thought of myself as particularly attached to me phone.  I'm actually the kind of person you probably get annoyed with -- always keeping my phone on silent, never answering it, and checking my voicemails (maybe) three times a month.  In fact, losing my phone was probably God's way of teaching me that I'm a poor phone steward and need to become more responsible before I get a new one.

But seriously -- the first day without my phone, I felt depressed, confused, anxious, isolated, and insecure.  It was crazy, folks.  CRA - ZY.   My husband said that there have been studies done showing the similarities between drug withdrawal and technology withdrawal.  And sure enough, one search on Google revealed as much.  This website said, and I quote:

"Being forced to stay away from computers, cell phones, iPods, [etc.]... causes young people to suffer similar symptoms to drug addicts and smokers who go cold turkey."

Umm, excuse me?  Symptoms similar to drug addicts who go cold turkey??   Doesn't that seem a tad bit extreme?

I could laugh.  I could say that losing my cell phone was a mere annoyance and leave it at that.  But I'd be lying.  

The first day without my phone was dismal.

But the second day wasn't so bad.

And the third day, I thought: "Hey, I could really get used to this."

Since then, I've been extra thankful for the unexpected and inadvertent silence that's entered into my life -- a new stillness in which I am not tied to a little ringing piece of plastic.  And I decided that I could sit and worry about my phone and wonder what I will do about it, or I could take this chance to move beyond the anxiety and isolation and trust that God has a plan, even in something as minor as this.

I'm moving beyond.

And I still don't have a phone.

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