What I Learned Being Phoneless for Three Weeks

In the thrilling conclusion to our tragic saga, I have finally received my replacement phone. In total I was phoneless for about three weeks (well almost phoneless, I was using an old phone of my dad’s that had none of my contacts or apps, so it was basically an emergency call home device). In the past, I’ve read articles about people who have made a conscious decision to go technology free for a certain period of time to write about their experience. I write this to offer a counter point. Instead of the numerous pieces talking about technology addiction and how freeing being tech free can be, I say it’s pretty sucky.

I am not good at keeping in contact with people to begin with. Strip away possibly the easiest and least stressful form of contact (texting) and I will just stop talking to people. In the three weeks I had no phone, my conversations with people I didn’t live with (hi parents!) or work with faced a massive drop off. When I’m having a bad dip in my mood I often stop communicating well, and unfortunately, the reverse appears to be true too. When I stop being able to communicate, my mood dips. It was especially hard given that I’m in a long distance relationship. We were still texting, talking on facebook, skyping, etc. But because texting on my phone was awkward and I’m not always on my computer, we talked less. Sad face.

Those of you who know me (or actually even those of you who don’t really know me but have seen this blog) know that I love taking pictures. Phones have made it ridiculously easy for me to document anything and everything that captures my interest. Do most of those photos ever see the light of day? No, but I love that if I see a strange looking bug or a book I want to remember to google later all I have to do is whip out my phone. In high school, just as smartphones were becoming more common place but before I made the jump to owning one, I carried around a small camera in my backpack so I could take photographs of things that happened at school. Carrying just my phone is so much more convenient. Now the old phone I borrowed could take pictures, but they were low quality and the camera took a long time to pull up and be ready. The split second pictures I could capture on my iphone of a cool bird on the bird feeder, were often missed in the time it took the camera to load.

As ridiculous as it is, I also really missed a lot of my apps. I missed the silly cat game I have where I put out fake toys to lure cats to visit my yard so I can take pictures. Most apps I could have found a version of which could be downloaded to my temp phone (in fact I did cave and get instagram because, again, I love pictures), but given that it was meant to be just that, I didn’t, assuming it wouldn’t matter that much. Turns out that even if they’re silly, having my random games and other programs make me happy.

Everyone’s different but for me, having a phone that works the way I need it to is much nicer than being off the grid. I want to be able to talk to my friends, take pictures, be my morning alarm, or do any of the number of other things that my phone lets me do. In the grand scale of world problems, not having a phone is a small one, but it makes a difference to me.

Now I have a working phone and not only that but it’s really pretty! Look!

Phone

Stay magical readers!

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