How many times have you heard someone say, "my whole life is in there" when talking about a cell phone or pda? I'm guilty. I've said it many times. God love the inventors of the iPhone for making me more dependent on a small electronic device than any human being should be.
It houses the contact information of hundreds of people including the guy who fixes my car, the gal who does my hair, a great psychic and my gynecologist. It maintains my schedule without which I wouldn't know if I was supposed to be at a baseball game tonight or in class or picking up razor blades and dark chocolate at Target. It tells me when I'm ovulating, alerts me when the Cardinals win (which is rare these days) and keeps me abreast of the latest changes in the St. Louis weather. It occupies my time when I'm bored, helps me stay overly involved in the lives of people I have "friended" on various social media platforms and tells me when the New Kids on the Block have scheduled another concert. I am very fond of my phone. I might even love it. A little bit... It could be said on occasion that my cell phone is everything to me.
But once a year, I have made it a practice to clean out my phone. I've written about my spring cleaning rituals in the past so this is not a surprise. However, in this older and wiser frame of mind, I am thinking I may have been a little quick to pull the trigger in some cases. If indeed my whole life is in my phone, perhaps I should consider that piece of my life before I carelessly erase it from memory.
Recently, I've received a few phone calls and text messages from numbers I didn't recognize because... I had deleted those people from my phone. Frantically, I searched to see if there was any way to figure out who had contacted me. What if it's that guy that I said I never wanted to see again even though that wasn't completely true and I've kind of been hoping he'd eventually come back around? Or what if it's that old friend I haven't heard from in years who is too prideful to apologize even though she knows I'm right and she finally wants to say she's sorry? (GASP!) I may have altered the path of my life forever by deleting part of my WHOLE LIFE from that silly phone.
The advent of instant contact has provided so many conveniences in life. It's amazing how connected we all are. To think there was a time when a man rode a horse across the country to deliver messages written on paper with a feather blows my mind. All I have to do is press a button to reach someone now. Yet all of this technology has also made it easier for us to dismiss people from our lives. We can unfriend them or delete them in the click of a button.
While there are a few folks who I will not name that have been deservedly deleted from my phone and therefore from my whole life, there are others who may have been dismissed too soon. I joked today at work that I sometimes struggle to know whether a moment calls for a hug or backhand. In some respects though, that might ring a bit true. I guess the moral of the story is that we should take a little time before deciding to permanently wipe people out of our phones and out of our lives for good. And we should ALWAYS leave a message after the tone just in case we are the ones who have been deleted.