Mentally I begin every post with an obligatory but very genuinely felt self-recrimination for not having posted a single one of the billion thoughts I have had between the last post and this one. I try and visualize a running checklist in my mind and think of how to incorporate all of them here, onto one page. And inevitably I toss the whole plot because I can’t remember half of those ideas and I’m sure I’ll write something brand new and the rest is just a loss. A sad, sad loss.
I want to downsize my life. Somehow this concept feels like it wants to turn around and look at back at me with this face: The word just doesn’t fit right, it has odd angles that build an awkward box around my intention. Because my life already feels very small. I don’t wan’t it smaller. I think my dearest friends feel left out actually, like their space inside it got squinched. It isn’t their fault, or mine really, #kidshappen(ed). I have a suspicious feeling that somewhere near or tangled up with the root cause of my desire to downsize is a slimy little addiction to my smartphone. I hate that damn thing. I need that damn thing. (See??) But even the little suspicions on my shoulder have suspicions on their shoulders doubting them, because it is rather convenient to partially blame my phone for a lack of self discipline…isn’t it?
I mean, I should be able to conquer the stupid thing and use it (for fun) only when I’m not around my kids, or my friends/family, or while driving, or before bed or in bed or first thing when I wake up (it’s my clock ok!), or when I should otherwise be doing productive things. And also, it blurs the already blurry line between my personal life and what I feel is some kind of “public” life. Everybody has a “public” life now, on Facebook, like we’re all some kind of famous. Phhht. I work my Rodan & Fields business from my cell phone, from my personal Facebook. So it is work and social and personal. Then there all the other apps that ask for an email and a birthdate and your picture, and wants to notify you of everything special you never want to miss. Just name your version of bread and circuses.
But it isn’t just my phone, it’s the gradual infestation of a myriad of siphons that seem to leech my spiritual and mental energy and acuity. You know how in cartoons a character will sometimes get its head smashed in between two cymbals, their eyes go wide and its lines get all squiggly like the vibration is just rattling every bone in its head? Energetically, spiritually, emotionally, intuitionally, I think that people everywhere are internally rattling with this awful vibration from the constant invasion of digital connectivity. I feel as if the waters of my soul could run deeper but this hum keeps diverting them, making the stream shallow and shallower still. Sometimes I think I’m just trickling along and spread so thin and maybe in danger of drying up altogether. But of course that’s silly…and yet now that my life has indeed changed pace I have become aware of an ache for a simpler world.
I remember my high school life before cell phones. I think I got my first one my junior or senior year. I liked the way the size of life felt then. In my head everyone sort of has a reality that occupies a physical acreage around them. Mine, in high school, was obviously pretty much focused on high school. Also the town I lived in and all the people, places, and things in it. And likewise the couple of towns nearby. Then too my mother’s family on another continent that I sometimes got to visit, so there were exciting periods of travel. There wasn’t so much happening that I couldn’t afford to look at things one at a time. I didn’t feel like I had people waiting on my attention in the dusty corners of friendships I haven’t had time for. I didn’t have an online “presence” that probably has a life of its own and can never truly be deleted. I didn’t have five hundred accounts and apps and databases saving my info and preferences and decisions. There was time for work and for school and for all the people that I wanted to talk to or spend money on – because birthdays, and stuff. Now I don’t have time for anything, and never enough money, and all of the special things I never want to miss keep blowing up my phone and my email and driving me nuts. I have over one thousand unread emails and that number just keeps on stacking up. I want the internet to forget I exist.
Except for any of you readers. Y’all please remember me lol. I want to figure out how to disconnect the drains of all other social media so that I can write more not less. Downsizing isn’t the right word. Maybe pruning is. I want writing to add to my life not take away from it, but even the self-imposed pressure to blog on my sad inconsistent little website seems to be just enough to wither my little seeds. I have been praying since March, right after my dad’s stroke, to be fertile soil. I feel as if nothing takes root and my focus, my attention it just shrivels up and dies. I want ROOTS! I want to be fertile soil. I’ve been praying for water Lord. Water me.