Our household – my office space included – has been internet-less for near on three months.
Extremely, catastrophically disastrous!
You have no idea!
Or maybe you do.
The first month wasn’t all bad, as I was moving and unpacking boxes and being all nesty and homey and, basically, pissed off with boxes and shit lying around everywhere, so I “had to get rid of them before I could do anything”.
You know how procrastination works at times? Yeah, you get it.
Once I got the house-and-head-clutter cleared, I was Good To Freaking Go! Bring the work on, cos I’m freaking ready! And, oh, by then how ready was I to get stuck into writing again, to blogging, and to make the difference I like to make. To get into some recipes, and resources, and … well, lots of stuff.
But we were still in this terrible, horrible void of No Technology.
Embarking upon sessions at a local cafe and the local library provided me with the outlet I needed, and just able to keep on top of things. My Post It Notes got a good seeing to, and now decorate much of my new office, filling the space with notes on what needs to be done, ideas that I needed to get out of my head and all the rest of it.
Mostly, I was annoyed because I finally had the space, physically and psychologically, to take the next step of my future, and it was thwarted. I was also disconnected from my daily online connections, which some may feel is a bit “you spend too much time on Facebook” but, really, is often the only time I speak to another human outside my own family. I like to be connected with people in one way or another. When that is stripped away from me, I don’t fare all that well.
And then … well, then, there was the daily “Are we getting internet today?”
Did I say daily? How about Every Waking Hourly?
As the weeks dragged on, my impatience with Telstra (yes, I damn well am naming!) was wearing thin, especially as there was a lot of talking-the-talk going on, but when it came to the actually doing stuff about stuff, suddenly, the calls … simply stopped, and the frustrations of the children was gathering momentum.
The thirteen-year-old had, essentially, had a limb or seven removed. Apparently. He was deprived of any form of communication with his friends. Where messaging individuals and groups was part of his daily activity, now, he was out of the loop, devoid of any knowledge and deprived of contact with individuals who could understand what he was talking about.
I did drop the line about having to stay in a somewhat public area when we were chatting, using our voices, to our friends what with the handset of the phones being attached to the actual phone – not the entire phone being the handset – by a short, curly cord, and that being tethered to a wall via an additional cord. I also would have suggested he call his friends, but we were without a telephone line, too.
By Monday (with the connection being promised on Tuesday), the eleven-year-old was starting to show signs of MMW – Major Minecraft Withdrawal, and there were tears and everything.
Things were rapidly melting down all over the place and I was inclined to think, on more then one occasion, First World Problem and, really, I shouldn’t be all whiney and complainy in the grand scheme of things.
And maybe I – or we – shouldn’t.
Then it occurred to me. The fact is we live in the first world!
This is how our world operates. Yes I was without internet, but my entire livelihood currently relies on it.
Messaging and Minecraft not withstanding, my kids are required to have internet access; for communication with teachers, for homework, for research, for submitting assignments.
Maybe ‘this’ ‘shouldn’t be the way things are, but it simply is the way things are.
Homework and assignments were late, lunchtime at school was spent attempting to complete tasks, work could not be done at home, creating a minefield of stress and effort that was, essentially, unnecessary.
Email access, for me, was restricted to specific hours (not necessarily a bad thing), and Every. Single. Task took far longer to complete than usual, because of the equipment I was forced to use. Not to mention the added time in getting to and from venues.
Communication, a quality I am pedantic about, was well below par and not sitting well with me at all.
Balls started dropping and additional stress just piled on more stress (oh, and that I couldn’t tend to much of my To Do List and writing schedule due to, well … all that stuff up there …)
It is, whether we like it or not, the way this world, our First World, functions.
It’s not ‘chipped nail’ kind of First World Problem, although, sadly, even a chipped nail can mean the difference between inclusion and ostracism, getting the job or not, in some circles. Fucked as that is, it is how this community works to some degree.
Having said all of that, I am now reconnected! Huzzah!
My children are wandering around … well, one is, phone in his hand, messaging everyone, yet seemingly not falling down the stairs. The other is updating Minecraft and being all happy.
I am back to proper writing, on my usual device, and it is much easier on the mind, the neck and my back.
I have missed you all terribly, and am SO FREAKING HAPPY to be back on board, back writing, back creating, scheming and evil planning.
Back to doing what I love, in a new space – a room of my own.
What have you been up to the last two months or so? What First World Problems have you had to deal with?