I felt like having a funeral for it, but I am too overwhelmed by the stress of feeling disconnected, which is ironic due to the fact that I still have a smartphone and a laptop. But I had come to really love my Nexus 7 tablet. It wasn’t my first tablet, and it won’t be my last. The reality is that it only lasted 17 months, but I really used it a lot, especially having experienced multiple hard drive crashes last year.
My first tablet was a Nook. I bought it after a trip in which I was charged a fee for being over the airline weight limit due to all the books I was carrying. As soon as I landed I made the switch and have never looked back – I have also come to depend on having a full dictionary at the tip of my fingers (both the Nook and Kindle apps have them).
And then last year I had terrible luck with my laptop experiencing four hard drive crashes, two of which occurred while we were living and traveling in Australia. According the Dell it was just a string of bad luck, and they finally upgraded me to a newer, faster, and better laptop. Note to self: always buy the extended warranty! According to my kids, it was all Dell’s fault for not being Apple. No matter who is at fault, I came to rely on my Nexus 7 even more than I thought I would when I bought it to replace my Motorola 10” which I bought to replace my (original) Nook.
I chose the Nexus 7 because it was small and lightweight and came unlocked, which meant I could use any carrier for coverage in the states or overseas. It worked beautifully until it didn’t. I won’t end up losing any data, and while inconvenienced for a few days it is not a big deal in the scheme of things.
But the issue is the withdrawal I am feeling from not having my tablet in my purse, by my side or in my hands. I feel disconnected. I know that real connection for me is when I am able to be with real people in real time. However the illusion of connection from being online is huge. And I was sucked into the false sense of connection through my tablet.
For Christmas 2010 we took the kids to Costa Rica and had a terrific time. Part of what made that family vacation so great was that we went unplugged. No smartphones, no tablets, no online distractions, only us. We connected by being together and playing games. It was wonderful. We all felt a little bit of electronic withdrawal at first, but it wasn’t long before we were just playing and enjoying being in a beautiful place on the planet.
So I was bit surprised at the depth of loss I felt when my tablet died the other day. The good news is that I didn’t panic, no momentary thoughts of crawling into bed and pulling the covers over my head—which I literally did in 2001 when I experienced my first hard drive crash. The other good news is that it died just two days before I was off for a three day stitching retreat with some girlfriends, which is the ultimate in connecting in my book.
Knowing how to take care of ourselves is critical. For me, hanging out with my family and/or good friends is a great way for me to mother myself. Connecting online is fine, but nothing beats as connecting in person.
How have you coped when your technology has let you down?
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