Friday, June 14, 2024
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My Recent Bout with NoMo-Phobia

I recently experienced five hours of mental torture. In a set of unusual circumstances, I found myself out and about taking care of errands related to my Internet service. While I did accomplish some tasks, I realized that it would probably be over a week before my new internet service could be installed. “No biggie,” I thought to myself as I could still access the web from my laptop through my cell phone’s hotspot. I got back home just to notice that an unwelcome person had left a letter on my door. I couldn’t wait to tell my relatives all about it so I reached for my phone to call them. Where. Is. My. PHONE?!! Oh my goodness! “No biggie,” I thought again. I’ll just flag down a neighbor and call my relatives to come back. So, at this point, I’m walking around outside wondering where all the nosy neighbors are when you need them. So approximately eight minutes into this horrendous Keifer Sutherland spin-off, I get my relatives on the phone. 

 

Me: “I left my phone in your car.”

 

Relative: “Why didn’t you call?”

 

Me: How can I call without my phone?

 

Relative: “Oh, yeah! Well, we’re all the way up the road now!”

 

Pause. I live in Atlanta. If you know anything about the city, you can actually be in a totally different town within eight minutes when there’s little traffic. As a matter of fact, you can drive through several towns within that time on the highway. However, it’s only eight minutes. Okay, sixteen if we count turning around. Is not a single woman living by herself worth that? I told my relatives that I had to disconnect because the neighbor was getting antsy. I asked them to please come back and knock on my door as I was not going to go anywhere that evening without a phone. 

 

Please understand my frame of mind. Here I am with the sun abandoning me and the moon creeping in on me like some old, drunk dude at the club with missing teeth. “Looks like it’s just me and you, baby-girl!” The anxiety was unsettling. I had been up all night before because I just could not relax to sleep for some reason. So, that same morning is when I was able to catch up on sleep. Now, darkness has fallen and I can’t even sleep through it till the next day because there’s not a sleepy bone in my body! Arrgh! According to PubMed, “Nomophobia or NO MObile-PHone-phoBIA is used to describe a psychological condition when people have a fear of being detached from mobile phone connectivity.”

 

Picture being home alone with no connection to the world. Bored. No internet service. No phone. No biggie, right? I decided to employ my meditation techniques and some journaling. That helped for about 30 minutes then I just wanted to scream. I would never want to be in jail but at least in jail, the guards walk by to check on people. This was torturous. I became neurotic. “What if someone sneaks in the house and I don’t have my phone to call the police?” I also don’t have cable because I just watch Netflix and news headlines on YouTube. “What if there’s a COVID Armageddon and I have no way of being warned about the Zombie apocalypse?” What are the chances of my internet service acting up, my car being broken down, and forgetting my mobile phone? Something had to be done. 

 

Four and a half hours in, I saw a nosy neighbor and took advantage of the situation while observing pandemic protocols, of course. I arranged a $50 Uber to be reunited with my homie-lover-friend, Samsung Galaxy. No biggie? I got on UberEats to order biggie fries and a biggie drink from Wendy’s. I started streaming “Big Poppa” and “One More Chance” by Biggie Smalls. 

 

Going without my phone was a big deal. Do you have Nomophobia too? “The signs and symptoms observed in NOMOPHOBIA cases include: anxiety, respiratory alterations, trembling, perspiration, agitation, disorientation and tachycardia,” according to PubMed. I think I should work on this attachment to my phone . . . but not yet.

-Consuela Allen

Consuela Allen @speakerconsuela  | Consuela is a Certified Life-Purpose Coach, Certified Peer Specialist, Respect Institute Speaker, Mental Health First Aider, Spiritual Midwife, and Songwriter. In other words, she is a lover of words. Consuela enjoys utilizing written, verbal and musical communication to facilitate healing and wholeness.

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