I’ve been without a computer for a few weeks now, and it’s a situation that I’ve had mixed feelings about. What was originally my overwhelming feeling was one of frustration because I was so used to having constant access and that was hard not to have. This was especially frustrating since some of what I do for ‘me time’ requires online access (listening to Torah lectures, blogging, preparing my parsha class). The second feeling was one of appreciation that my energies are less divided and I’m able to be more emotionally present for my kids – often if they talk to me when I’m online, I’m only listening with half an ear. I feel more relaxed and focused, because my attention isn’t being split up in different directions as much. (With ten children, I still have plenty of times my energies are divided in many directions!)
Tonight I was enjoying talking with my older kids and hearing them share thoughts about Rosh Hashana (dd17 shared the contents of an entire shiur she listened to, and I told her only half jokingly that she should give my weekly class instead of me this coming Shabbos!). As I was sitting there, I realized that my feelings about not having a computer have shifted from minor frustration about not having a computer to use, to mostly appreciation of the increased time I have to do the many things I need to do! I feel more mentally focused on one thing at a time
I’d like to say that I’ve enjoyed this period so much that I won’t be getting another computer, but despite how much I’m enjoying being without a computer, it is a tool that I find very valuable. What I hope to take with me when my access is restored again is a better balance between my online and offline time.