Tuesday, July 11, 2017

My Day Without a Cell Phone

Yesterday, I went the majority of the day without my cell phone. Due to Monday morning exhaustion, my husband accidently took my phone to work with him. He left the house around 4am and by the time he noticed he had both my phone and his (they look the same) he was too far away to come back.

Thankfully I woke up naturally about 15 minutes after my alarm normally goes off. I was thinking that it felt like the alarm should have gone off already so I got up and checked the clock and sure enough, it was time to get going. I realized my phone was gone and searched around for a minute but realized my husband likely took it on accident. Thus began my day cell phone free.

As far as my workday went, I was more productive. My phone was not a distraction so I kept more focused on my work and less worried about missing something. Breaks and lunch meant I had to spend time actually talking to co-workers. Visiting with other people rather than browsing Facebook or Pinterest as a nice change of pace. I felt like I was bothering people by chatting with them but they all said they were happy to talk. Although there were moments I felt disconnected from the rest of the world, I was forced to connect with the people around me.

What I missed most about not having my phone was not being able to listen to a podcast on the way to work and not being able to see pictures or video chat with my daughter. The talking heads on the radio are pretty unbearable, in my opinion. And seeing photos or video chatting my daughter at some point in the day always makes me feel a bit more connected to her.

The most inconvenient thing about not having a phone yesterday was when I got home. Our AC was still broken when I got home (I had alerted the office by email already) and I needed to get in touch with the apartment office to make sure maintenance was going to come by. It is 90+ degrees here and too hot to go another night without AC. In addition, my husband ended up working a longer day than normal. He always picks up our daughter after he gets off work and they are at the apartment when I get home. Well I got home yesterday and walked into an empty apartment -- no sign of my husband or daughter.

Thankfully I recently met a co-worker who lives in the apartment across the parking lot. I walked over there and asked to borrow his phone. He and his wife were very kind in allowing me to call my husband to get a status update, call my mother to give her a status update and arrange child pickup, and call the front office to inquire once again about the broken AC.

I began chatting with my co-worker and his wife while keeping an eye out for the maintenance guy. We talked for over an hour and although I felt terrible about crashing their evening, they were very kind and hospitable. The wife asked about my daughter and specifically asked about my labor and delivery as she would like to have kids in the near-ish future. I told her I had a homebirth and used to be a doula. This sparked a whole line of conversation and she absolutely loved hearing about my experiences both attending births in the hospital and having my own daughter at home. She even wanted to get my number and the name of my podcast by the end of the conversation.

Not having a phone forced me to be resourceful with how I contacted others. It was "inconvenient" at times but it also forced me to make some new friends which was super fun. I basically took a break from Facebook all day, just checking it once briefly on the computer when I got home in the evening, which was also a nice change. My cell phone, this simple tool, which I did not even have until I was seventeen years old, has become something practically attached to my hand. It was nice to be reminded that I can live just fine without it and that it might even lead to good things to take a break.

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