I was surprised at how easily I offered to loan my laptop to a good friend who needed if for a few weeks. Not that I’m not willing to be generous or helpful, but I use my laptop daily so I would most certainly feel it’s absence. After giving it to her, however, I felt hopeful anticipation. It was a chance to simplify in a way I hadn’t yet had the courage to do. My husband and I had fallen into the habit of both being on our computers simultaneously a lot in the evenings. Like dueling musicians, only without the harmonious sound. It was basically a way of vegging out since we don’t own a t.v.
Reducing the amount of stuff we have to simplify our lives has been a multi-year process. If you’ve been a reader, you already know my story. In the technology department, though, we’d mostly only gotten rid of things that no longer worked or were obsolete. You could say my laptop was becoming obsolete, but it worked and I used it daily. Loaning it became a risk-free trial where I could change my mind if it was more “simplification” than I was ready for. I was looking forward to seeing how attached I really was and to how my daily routines might change (for the better?).
A couple of days into the “experiment” misfortune struck. Someone burglarized their house and took several small electronics, including my laptop. Thankfully, nobody was hurt and their place wasn’t damaged. I changed passwords and considered what I may have lost that was stored on it (I still haven’t thought of anything significant). Then I began wondering what was next. I went from hopeful anticipation (that I might find I liked being computer-less) to feeling a little directionless, as if someone had stolen my options.
As we’ve been working on gathering information for her insurance company, I realized I might get a new computer and suddenly felt excited by that possibility (so much for reducing). The next news was that maybe my computer was too old and there isn’t a comparable replacement anymore so I may not get anything (which only makes me certain I need one).
Until the outcome is clear, I will regroup and go back to thinking about this as an experiment…delay making a decision and allow myself to settle into another way of being for now. Maybe the unplugged vacation I recently wrote about taking was a foreshadowing of what could be.