Lessons from a Dumb Phone & a Disabled Computer

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Last month I ordered a lightweight keyboard to use with an iPad. I planned to get one to downsize for travel, so I’d be more able to manage my briefcase alone when needed. I’m typing on that keyboard today from my sofa for another reason…

Almost 2 weeks ago, I went through a Microsoft upgrade process for the Red Dell I’ve used to write for the past 3.5 years. Long sad story short, a hidden virus was awakened by the Windows 7 install, ruining programs and severely damaging the laptop. A couple of long days ended with my leaving the Microsoft store in tears because, while my files were safe on Carbonite, the techs could not save my emails.

There would be many people who’d wonder why I didn’t answer their letters. People needing information or encouragement for themselves or loved ones. And no email addresses to tell anyone why I wouldn’t respond to whatever request or interview they’d written about. Or post Onset Stories. Or thank people for donations…

What was there to be glad about that day? I got to talk with a woman with Rheumatoid Disease – right there working at the store. Her mom and sister have it, too… We connected on levels no one else could understand, but the staff overheard and said it helped them realize how important it was to get my stuff back!

So I was left with just my dumb phone. This pink phone is like a high school girl with a bit of bling, but not much going on intellectually. Seriously, it takes 5 minutes to send a text message to Facebook or reply to a Tweet.

Typing on my dumb phone, “resting” or “serving” toggle as the same keys. I pondered how much more comfortable I am doing something for someone than resting doing “nothing.”  It’s an old Mary v. Martha argument. Sometimes “just resting,” letting your heart hear, is doing enough.

Kelly and Leslie in DCThere was so much I needed to DO – my sons’ room was dismantled for me to “help” paint; homeschool…; RA Warrior and RPF deadlines; and a trip to DC. Yet, I alternately rested and packed, and caught the plane for DC, still worrying about all the people I’d let down.

The dumb phone delivered a Facebook post that reminded me we don’t believe all is well because everything is going just right. We believe it IN SPITE OF whatever we see. “All is well” usually is something we declare by faith, like the author of the hymn It Is Well did. He was mourning a great loss and made a decision to believe all is well.

Imagine if we could only rest knowing the world was ok if we were accomplishing everything according to schedule.

I made it to DC with my friend Leslie’s help and there is so much to tell about our meetings there! I still worried about the thousands of missing emails, and it was a battle, but I kept reminding myself that all is well and that doesn’t depend on me.

Of course all the mess and the broken laptop were waiting for me Friday night, along with boys needing school help and doctor visits. Saturday, I worked on the missing emails problem for a while, realizing I was probably wasting my time as I had so much of the past month on that machine. Then I thought of something the techs had all missed: the profile name was changed when the email program was restored, so the new name needed to be typed into the path file.

epatient Dave tweet

Suddenly, the emails were back! No one was more surprised than I was. It’s still taking days to restore all the files and eventually there will have to be a new computer. And probably a less-dumb phone, too. But it’s surprising how smart this one turned out to be.

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Kelly Young. All rights reserved.

This entry was posted on Monday, September 17th, 2012 at 4:55 am and is filed under Communication and Inspiration. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.


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