By Shannon Magsam
Gwen and many, many other friends (and family) have teased me for several years now about my stupid phone. I mean, the thing couldn’t even take pictures. And I also didn’t text, never added contacts (never bothered to learn plus I just remembered people’s phone numbers, shock!) and there were definitely no apps to keep my kid happy on a long drive.
So when the day came to find my new iPhone friend, I brought along Gwen to the AT&T store.
While there, they asked whether or not I wanted unlimited texting. I balked. I told the salesperson I didn’t think I’d use texting all that much, really. I wasn’t texting now, was I?
Gwen laughed. “Believe me, you will be,” she promised.
I have no problem admitting when I’m wrong. I now officially LOVE TEXTING. I thought I would just email if I needed to send someone a message. But isn’t texting so much easier?
I’ve resisted a new smart phone for so long because, well, I have a problem staying away from my computer at home. If it’s on, I’m checking/responding to email, writing/editing/ posting a story, facebooking, tweeting, networking, chatting or just googling something. In other words, my family often sees the top of my head while I sit at the kitchen table/office desk and tap away.
I can often be found peering around the side of the monitor to take part in family conversations or listen to the tv. My husband will say, “Come watch this! It’s so funny!” I’ll say, “Yes, I heard it! It was hilarious!” and keep typing. Not my prouder moments.
So sometimes I just put on my shoes and say to Ladybug or her dad or both: “Let’s go! Let’s get outta my office for a while!”
So I wondered what an iPhone would mean to me (and my family) if the office came along with us.
While we were on vacation I’ll admit I could hardly keep my hands off the iPhone. I was clingier than a cheap suit. I took pictures of the food we ate, I uploaded to facebook, I checked my email, I… sound familiar? Oops. In my defense, I’d only had my new “toy” for a few days so I was testing out all its capabilities.
One day, while I was in New Orleans, we went on a swamp tour. While drifting way out there on a boat, I guess the phone lost its signal. And never regained it. I tried hard to resuscitate my new social media buddy, but no luck. The words ‘no service’ taunted me, no matter what I did. I was starting to sweat. I called Gwen in a panic (wow, I could still make a phone call!) and she offered some good advice about pressing the home button and the off button at the same time for about 30 seconds.
When I saw those bars, my heart soared. I could communicate again! Never mind that I was eating dinner at an outdoor café, the weather was beautiful, live jazz music was playing to my right and family members were all around me. I quietly put the phone away and started talking to the IRL people.
Since I’ve had a few weeks with my iPhone, I’m a little less obsessed. Now I’m appreciating it as a tool, an especially good tool for someone who runs a website. I’ve realized I can check my email quickly while I’m out and about, respond if need be and then not even turn my computer on when I walk in the door. When the computer is off, I’m not as tempted to walk in the door and plop down in my office/kitchen chair. This is a good thing, because when it’s on, I always get sucked in for way longer than I anticipated.
So the final verdict: I *heart* my new iPhone! Where can I find a bumper sticker that says so?
Shannon Magsam is mom to 9-year-old Ladybug, married to Ladybug’s dad, John, and co-creator of nwaMotherlode.com. To read previously published installments of Life With Ladybug, click here.