The day my phone drowned

You’ve heard of people dropping their phones into the toilet or swimming pool. But have you ever heard of anyone having their water bottle contents spill in their handbag resulting in their phone becoming water damaged?

Yeah, it happened to me. Such rotten luck, isn’t it?

My kids advised me to leave it in a bag of rice, and it should dry out and be able to work after 3 days.

Effective home remedy?

I took their advice, as the shops were closed anyway, but by the next morning, when it still could not power on, I decided not to let it corrode further and took it to the shop.

The strange thing was, I was surprised how calm I was.

I had 5 seconds of panic, thinking, “My photos! My to-do lists!” and irritated with myself for incurring the unnecessary cost to replace the phone.

Then my considerations went to my leather handbag. I don’t know which was worse. My spoilt phone or my spoiled bag.

But after that wave of panic washed over me, I thought, oh well.

Guess my 6 days of retreat had left me in a zen mode, and somehow, losing material possessions did not disturb me as much as I assumed it would.

One of the things we reflected on over the week was that all of us needed to slow down, and to focus on the “essentials”.

As I went about my day without a phone, I suddenly felt liberated.

I could not be reached by anyone. Not even my kids! I had total freedom and peace.

Initially, I felt the urge (probably borne out of habit) to look into my bag to check if I had text messages I had missed. It’s like someone calling out to you constantly.

But then I felt a new found sense of lightness that I could concentrate on whatever I was doing and not bother about anything else, without having 10 things going on in my head about what I needed to get done, what I had forgotten, what else I had to settle.

In the in-between moments of waiting in line where I would automatically do something “productive” on my phone like replying to emails or reading the news, I realised I could simply do nothing.

It made me wonder, how did we live before the advent of mobile gadgets?

We seem to be shackled to them in this day and age.

For all it’s benefits, it’s sad that our gadgets have taken over our lives. We have forgotten how to just be. To enjoy being in the present moment.

To be free.

Alas, after 3 days, I had my phone back. And life returned to normal. With the phone usually within reach.


~ – a blog on parenting 6 kids in Singapore ~