I didn’t think it was possible to burn out when happy. Sixty days ago, I learned otherwise.
I had gone three months without a free Saturday night, and while not a bad way to live life, for me, it was … odd. But this was not the only symptom. I could never seem to focus, constantly multi-tasking or procrastinating on my phone.
I bought this phone for its enhanced picture-taking capabilities (or if you’re like me, a chance to improve my sleuthing videography skills) and its bigger screen, so I could be more efficient when, let’s say, I needed to pay bills on-the-go (or more likely spend endless hours swiping left on my dating apps).
But while there is nothing wrong with the phone (minus the fact I dropped it in the toilet six months ago, and its audio is still a little “off”), there was definitely something wrong in my life. The difference is I didn’t think everything was wrong with my life. I knew I was happy, but I was also exhausted and never feeling like I could fully “show up.”
So, two months ago, I decided to break up with my phone. And while I didn’t publish this then, I’ve decided to post it now as a testament to its grandiosity but also – it worked. Continue reading
I walk down the cracked sidewalk along Wisconsin Avenue, past the Starbucks and Regal movie theater in Bethesda. My fingers start to tingle, and my heart rate increases. Suddenly I feel extremely weak. Each step is an effort, and I feel a steel box closing in around my heart. I am out of breath. My limbs start to shake, and my vision is less reliable. I can’t read the street sign in front of me. I stop at the next intersection and look for the glucose tablets in my purse.
I scramble to chew four of these tablets quickly, leaving a powdery residue on the tips of my fingers. I lean against the side of a brick building and call my supervisor. I’m supposed to be in a meeting in two minutes but until I get my blood sugar back up, there’s no way I’m making it back to the office without help. I’m only a five-minute walk away, but right now my vision is blurry and my hands are shaking.
My supervisor doesn’t answer his phone so I call my work colleague and let her know of the situation. I usually don’t tell people when I’m having a low blood sugar, but in this case, I realize it’s the safest thing I can do in case I do have a seizure in the middle of the street. My work colleague has severe allergies so we’ve both agreed to be each other’s medical back-up. I know where her EpiPen is, and she knows what to do if I pass out from low or high blood sugar. Continue reading
I remember when social media became a thing, when Apple first introduced the iPhone, and how others worried about whether technology was killing our connectivity or not? Are we all the more connected yet narcissistic, so wrapped up in our everyday nuisances that we forget about the world and each other?
I can’t say I blamed them — the more Facebook posts I saw from the generation behind me, even my own generation, I wondered, too, if we were all becoming so self-absorbed and into ourselves that we ignored the benefits of having a collective. And maybe that’s why so many of us ranted on about being alone to a world of loners on the internet?
I feel like my generation is caught in the middle — some of us have completely embraced technology, and some of us still remember dragging the corded phone from the hallway into our bedrooms and the irksome sound of dial-up.
I Remember When…
I remember the excitement of getting my own phone with my own line (this was before caller ID and cordless phones). It’s not that I was much of a phone talker, but I liked the privacy. I remember when my best friend’s family in middle school got their first home computer. I remember thinking how much the black and white box reminded me of a cow. Continue reading