Technology, Anxiety, Clarity, Oh My!

If you read my blog ‘Fresh Start’, you know that I recently did a complete overhaul of this website.  What I didn’t share was how exactly it went down.

First, I copied all the content onto my laptop so I could re-purpose as needed.  Then, with the hosting company’s assistance, I cleaned house.  I mean, I really CLEANED house.  All that remained was the name of the website.  It was completely naked and I was relieved, and motivated to start fresh.  Only moments later, my laptop (the one I am typing on right now) went kaput.  The hard drive experienced a fatal error and as I sat watching the screen go from familiar stuff to a dark screen and blinking cursor, I felt an incredible amount of dread.  Oh shit, all my stuff is gone.

I commenced to an odd mix of deep breathing and crying as I came to grips that all of my documentation, career maps, business plans, counselor worksheets and tools, and family photos may be gone….forever.  (Queue the dreadful music)

As I proceeded to pack my laptop to take it to a local electronics retailer, my mobile phone (which was already on it’s last leg) began flickering and presenting the time a few to several hours ahead, ignoring the Eastern time zone set.  That pushed my watch (yes, another piece of technology I rely on) to reflect the incorrect time and stop receiving notifications from my phone because my phone was not properly receiving notifications.  In literally ten minutes time, I lost access to my calendars, communication, and messages.  All that worked was the calling feature from my phone.  I had just wiped my website clean and had no way to update it.  What if someone that I gave my business card to a year ago decides to go visit my website?  What if the person I tested my elevator speech on recently decides to look me up on the Google?  Oh dear…all they will see is my name and a naked site. Oh dear, oh dear, oh dear.

I was flying blind, and when I say anxiety was an issue….ummmm….I was ready to throw all of my technology, hell even electronics, out of any near window of my home.  This reminds me that I need to apologize to the microwave.  He has never let me down and to drag my microwave into this, just isn’t loyal.

Blog 2 cover pic

Anyway, after a few days, I got my laptop back with a new hard drive, I upgraded my mobile phone and things appeared back on track.  Except: the retailer I took my laptop to could not retrieve any of my data.  Remember that fresh start?  Yep, I’m living it right now.  It is anxiety provoking to again face the fact that I didn’t back up my data sooner (I kept putting it off), and that I have to search my office for paper copies of things I’ve worked on in the past.  I have to manually recreate some things.

I believe there is a lesson in everything.  I’m an existentialist at heart, and believe that I have a choice here.  I can sit in the anxiety, fussiness, and full on dread.  Trust me, I did temporarily and there’s still a bit of lingering dread every time I log into this laptop and see very little on my desktop.  I can also see what I can do to make this better, to see what the lesson is here, to see how I can make my own human existence more comfortable, in a healthy way.  Some positives here: I could afford to have my hard drive replaced and did not have to get a brand new laptop (heaven knows it was not in momma’s budget right now).  Two of my sons offered without thinking twice to allow me to use their laptops until mine was fixed.  Through the cracked screen, stunted mute button, and Doritos flavored space bar, I was able to get a lot of work done, and my client’s were none the wiser.  Except for one of my couples who cracked up laughing when they saw the very many gaming stickers on the laptop, and asked when did I start playing Fortnite.

All of this, my friends, is what I call clarity.  This is where I do allow the anxiety and irritation of the situation to have it’s time, but it can not have ALL of my time.  I think my husband would have been more concerned if I was not worried at all when all of this went down.  But to have all of my interactions with everyone in our home wrapped around the grief I am experiencing of losing years of data?  Not healthy and not fair for anyone involved, including me.  Anxiety works in a cyclical manner and it LOVES more worry.  A recovering perfectionist, this test could not have been more prominent in it’s message: I can imperfectly rebuild, and that’s OK.

My friends, if anything, that is what I hope your take away is.  My technology died, I grieved (and sometimes still grieve), and now I am rebuilding (birth and growth).  This cycle is a part of life and to be part of it, perfection is not a requirement or a prerequisite.  You, as I am, can rebuild, imperfectly, doing the best you can with what you have, and the results will be what you need.


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