Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Intervention

So, a few months ago, I was contacted by someone from up in the Provo area. They were doing a documentary on people with addictions to modern technology, particularly the internet, and people who use their phones for data streaming. I guess someone (we won't name names, but YOU know who you are) had referred me to them, and somehow they didn't think Blanding would be too far to drive to do a small piece on me and how unnaturally attached I was to my BlackBerry.

They sure discovered how far it really is when they tried to take the freeway to get here, and ended up on the road two extra hours, back-tracking on I-70. But I guess they were determined to do their jobs, because they stuck around for almost a week after showing up later than they had planned.

Those of you who live in Blanding may remember the small film crew that was trailing me for a few days. Yeah, that was a little weird. And for a while I even tried not to check my email, and facebook messages on my BlackBerry every five seconds whenever I was talking to them, but wow, it was harder to do than I thought. They probably thought it was rude that I had to leave a comment on my sister's blog while they were trying to ask me a question about whether I thought my addiction to technology had taken over my ability to function normally in the real world--"No way! Just let me finish my thought here. Now, what did you want?" And of course, they had to document how I would wake up in the middle of the night to check my messages, and how that is the first thing I would do when I woke up in the morning. I am sure that is going to make for some lovely footage. Those of you who have read this post know what I am talking about.

But even though having the film crew around was more than a little strange--and seriously stressful, that was not the worse part.

The worst part was when I went over to the Counseling Center to talk to Steve about Garrett's medication, and they took me back into one of their conference rooms instead, and the room was filled with "concerned" family and friends. Ugh!!! Seriously, you guys. I should have known. I used to be addicted to this show (See above picture), especially when I could Tivo it and watch every episode in succession. But this whole idea that I am addicted to the internet, especially blogs and facebook, and obsessed with my BlackBerry, it is just ludicrous! I know I never actually use the phone part to talk to someone--texting really works better for me--and come on, I have never liked using the phone. And as far as the idea that spending so much time on the internet is making me socially awkward in real life, seriously folks! I have always been socially awkward. You all know it is easier for me to express myself in writing.

But I guess the part where I had to concede there might be a problem was when they pointed out I was spending more time Googling recipes than actually doing any cooking, and my family was getting tired of eating cold cereal--you know it is bad when they tell you they don't want to eat cereal!-- and peanut butter sandwiches all the time.

While I think the whole "Intervention" thing was a bit over the top, I have to admit, my life has actually improved since I started my addiction rehab program. Luckily, San Juan Counseling has a pilot internet addiction program that I have been able to do as an outpatient, so we have been able to keep this whole process pretty low-key, as far as how many people have known about it. And as I have worked the program, I truly have been able to find my way back into the real world. I think the happiest one about that is Olivia, because now when we play pretend, I don't have to pretend to be the lady at work on her computer, I can actually interact with her.

It has certainly been hard. I have to admit, I have had a few relapses, and Britt has even threatened to get rid of the internet at our house altogether, but I am doing better. My BlackBerry is no longer blinking at me, feeding my compulsion to check whatever that new message is. That was and is still the hardest thing for me, but at least I can call from almost anywhere around here now with my new Alltel phone--I actually have service!

And since Britt has given me a lot more work to do while I am at the office, I don't really have time to be tempted to feed my addiction, like I was when I first started working here.

I just thought I would let you know, the episode of Intervention that features me will be airing next Spring. I will tell you when they give me an official date. They said they will be checking up on me again around that time also. So wish me luck! It has been so nice to learn how to interact in the real world again. It still going to take me some time, but I know now that I can. Thank you to all of you who cared about me enough to want to get me help. I promise I won't fail you.


Alright, I hope none of you seriously believed that story. As if a show like Intervention would ever come to Blanding for little old me? But truthfully, since I gave up my BlackBerry just last week, I realize how much that little phone/mobile internet device had taken over my life. I still want to keep checking my new Alltel phone just to see if it will do something more than tell me what time it is. It is driving me a little nuts that it doesn't do more, but really this is a good thing. We have downgraded to a simpler, less expensive phone plan.

We changed some things on our home phone calling plan also, to try to save money. We even considered eliminating it altogether, including the internet. I tell Britt I could have done it, but our boys do need the internet for their school work, and I obviously still love my internet, even without my BlackBerry and all its quick updates.

Trying to cut back on our expenses in other ways, we turned in our van lease and sold Britt's truck. Both had XM Radios in them, which we all LOVED listening to. We bought a nice little used Honda Civic and an old truck. They just have regular radio, and let me tell you KRTZ just doesn't cut it.

But again, I can live without.

The simple life really isn't so bad.

I promise, I have some real blog posts coming soon. I am amazingly busy, but that just means Britt and I will be making real money this month. Yay!

5 comments:

Kayela said...

JJ is also having XM withdrawals. We cancelled ours in May but for some reason and dont tell anyone I am still getting it in my Armada for FREE!!!!!!! We keep thinking that someday they will realize their mistake and it will quit but for now I still have it. Is that dishonest? I dont feel like we have to call them twice to cancel. Life seems to go better when we simplify it and get rid of the time consuming items.

Kim said...

That made me laugh. Hard. :)

malandbrian said...

That was really funny! I keep thinking we need to get rid of everything. We already don't have cell phones, except a pre-paid that we use when we travel. But some days I get so sick of the computer and internet. I think we for sure are getting rid of tv. Why pay 50 bucks a month when you can watch everything online now? Anyway thanks for the laugh today and for putting things into perspective, it is nice to live simply sometimes!

Chrislynn said...

You totally had me going, Crazy! If you were really addicted, I would be your enabler, because I like communicating with you through cyberspace. ;)

Becks said...

you make me laugh!!!