Friday, December 30, 2005

New Year's Resolution #1

Oh my. I don't consider myself particularly "religious," as I don't follow a particular religion. Rather, I consider myself "spiritual," although some may argue that describing oneself as such means literally having just a spirit and no body. But I confess to using the popular definition of spiritual, which means that I believe in a higher power and do give thanks for blessings, and am not necessarily above asking that higher power for help once in a while (okay, more often than that). I search. With that in mind, let me say that the past couple of weeks have been blessed ones.

My computer pooped out on Dec. 9. I thought it was Dec. 16, but when I checked my calendar and remembered what I'd been doing just prior to the machine's demise, I realized it was one week prior to that. It happened at night. I hate when things don't work at night. Anything that happens after dark, for me, is more heightened. Maybe it's because I feel more alone after dark, when I have fewer distractions from my general anxiety and the added anxiety I feel when things don't work. If anyone knows what I mean, raise your hand. Thanks, you in the back there. ;^)

Anyway, I was trying to add some additional (free!) antivirus, antispyware and firewall stuff to my system, and I called the friend who'd recommended these so I would have someone to prevent me from accidentally screwing it up. Also, I wanted someone around in case the whole thing was too anxiety-producing for me. A steady voice on the phone helps keep that stuff in check.

So there I was, going through the installation steps, when I came to the step that required me to restart my system. And the system wouldn't restart. It just hung. I tried again, and got the same result. "That doesn't sound very good," said my friend. Hey, he could afford to be calm; his system was still working. I, on the other hand, was quietly freaking out on the inside. It wasn't the sudden loss of Internet access that bothered me. It was the prospect of spending my nonexistent money on repairs or a new computer.

Most of my freakouts have happened at night. When I opened my son's dad's email in which he threatened to take me to court -- night. When I saw him and his (unbeknownst to me) new girlfriend at the movie theater -- night. When my dad had his TIA and landed in the hospital and I felt helpless to fix it -- night. Stuff like that. I won't give you more examples; it freaks me out just thinking about these things, so why focus on it? *deep breath*

After I got done freaking out and calling some family members to borrow a laptop computer and borrow (well, it might end up being considered part of a Christmas gift) money to use toward a new computer, I managed to fall asleep. When I got up in the middle of the night, though, I gravitated toward my broken computer out of habit. This happened again in the morning after I made my coffee. And again at several times throughout the day and the next couple of nights.

Then a curious thing happened. I gradually stopped missing being online. I began to spend more time doing other things. I played more. I took my son and my sister's dog (we were dogsitting) to the dog park. I read more. I went Christmas shopping. Yes, I missed my online friends quite a bit, and I did get behind in some work, but I also realized that a lot of my computer time is unnecessary. I mean, let's face it, I don't need to be on Craigslist more than once every couple of days, if that. I don't need to check the CNN site all that often; I probably shouldn't check it at all, as it only aggravates my anxiety. I don't need to Google every passing thought. And the computer just does not need me.

So my New Year's Resolution #1 (I do make them, for better or for worse) is to spend less time on the computer. Yes, I will still be blogging. In fact, you probably won't notice a big change in this site, meaning that it will continue to be as erratic as ever. ;^) Rather, I will notice a change in my personal life. I will be spending my computer time more consciously, and spending time in my offline life more productively. Which leads me to my New Year's Resolution #2: start dating again in 2006. Hoo-boy. I hope I still remember how after what has basically been a five-year drought. More on all that as it develops.

I hope you all had a lovely Christmas and are looking forward to the new year. 2005 has been full of blessings, although some were disguised as pure crap. (I just have to get in the habit of looking at these things a little more closely!) I have been blessed with great friends, both online and off. I have been blessed with challenges that I now see have helped me to grow, and I have been blessed with a family who loves me and also puts up with me. I've missed my fellow bloggers, from whom I constantly learn so much! I count you among my online friends and wish you all sorts of wonderfulness. (Oh, and I'm trying to reconstruct my bookmarks, so if you want to throw your URL my way, I would really appreciate it.)

Now I'm off to take my son to the beach for a couple of hours. I still have work to do, but I promised we'd stick our feet in the ocean today, so I'll get back to work afterward. Sometimes I have to schedule the fun, but so be it. Fun will be had, damn it! ;^)

More later...

Thursday, December 29, 2005

Not Exactly a New Post

I have lots to write, but haven't gotten around to it yet. My computer bit the dust over two weeks ago and I'm just getting accustomed to my new one -- and getting caught up on work. Soon, though, soon...

In the meantime, visit Doctor Mama. Her latest story (about her nose) will have you squirming. ;^)

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

I Love Messages Like This

Tonight, about two minutes after he left with his dad for his weekly overnight, the kiddo called and left the following voicemail:

"Hi, Mommy. Don't open the next door on my Advent calendar even though you think you should. Well, happy Christmas. Well, merry Christmas. I hope you have a good time. I hope you have a good sleep tonight. Love, Mommy. I love you. (*kiss* *kiss* *kiss*)"

Note: Recently he received a chocolate-laden Advent calendar from the mom of one of his classmates. He also has yet to learn how to sign off with his own name, and instead signs off with the name of the person for whom he's leaving the message; it's too cute to correct. Those kisses at the end are kiss noises. He kills me.