Caught in the Riptide of Change
Warning: This is a ranty-mc-venty-pants of a post so please click away or do not click over if you are not in the mood for such nonsense.
Lately, I feel like I’m lost in a current of changes. It’s like I’m out in the surf and there are giant waves looming over my head. Whenever I least expect it, a huge wave crashes down on me and tumbles me around so that all I can see are bubbles and I don’t know which way is up. It’s like I woke up one day and suddenly everything was going too fast for me to keep up. I’m not crying about being old yet. I know I have so much ahead of me and so much to be happy and thankful for, but my deep fear is that I am getting old and it’s the beginning of the end. I feel like it’s happening.
It started out with a hard drive wipe in April. My laptop never really recovered from the hard drive crash of 2013. Things were wonkey so I let Toby borrow my laptop and wipe it clean. I’m so glad that he still steps in to be my IT guy now and then. I figured a fresh start might fix the spinny wheel problems and the email clunkeridge that was plaguing me. Oh, apple email is just the worst lately.
When I got my laptop back it was all new and different. I had a new operating system with all kinds of whistles and bells that were frankly annoying. Of course I have no time for watching videos to educate me about all the new changes. Nah. I just wing it and figure things out as I go.
One of the new things about this operating system is that all my devices are linked whether I want them to be or not. I’m sure this a good thing but half the time I can’t figure it out. The icloud is like an evil overlord who likes to share things I don’t want shared and won’t let me get to things that I do want to share.
I cannot get my pictures from my phone to open on my laptop in photoshop. I use photoshop everyday. It’s what I do. So why can’t I just download my pictures and open them the way I used to? No! It’s like Apple put a protective covering over my photos like my car company puts a protective plastic covering over my engine. What if I don’t want to go to the dealership and I want to change my own oil in my driveway?!! I can’t get to it?
Seriously, I plug in my phone and my pictures start automatically downloading but they go to some kind of mystery land hidden in my computer that I cannot see outside of the magical apple-picture-viewing center. I can order prints and make coffee table books. I can even edit pictures with some fancy filters BUT I CAN’T OPEN MY OWN PICTURES in photoshop. I think Adobe and Apple are having a war and I am stuck trying to make them talk to each other. I’m having no luck. Sometimes I try to email pictures from my phone to my laptop and even that is impossible, or at least nerve-wracking.
Email. Groan. Where do I even start?
I have switched completely to gmail because my apple email program is just beyond me. It has become the new trap for spam and I’m sure it’s silently turning into a black hole. I’ve given up. I’m so sad too because I use to be the queen of email organization. I had folders and everything was filed according to subject or client. I kept all my receipts for business write offs in one, important password emails in another, sentimental emails in another and important banking and legal emails in another. It was a tight ship. Then in the main browser section would be all my current emails to go through. Sure things got a little out of control in the main section but I knew that I could wade my way through to the bottom. Everything was chronological. First come first serve.
Now I’m living in the land of google mail and threads and conversations. Nothing is organized. It’s a big huge pile of random emails. There is no hope for ever getting to the bottom. In fact it just doesn’t matter. Out of sight, out of mind. Maybe that’s better but I constantly feel like I’m not remembering to get back to everyone. I can search my giant pile of emails and find things but there is no hope of organizing it, ever. Is this the new way? Is this how the kids do it? Is google just going to keep everything I ever do on file in some vault in the mountains somewhere? Is Google Mormon? Are they the beast? Are they going punch a microchip into my forehead someday?
You know I’m joking but sometimes I just wonder.
So since I’m officially out of love with Apple. I decided to give them the finger and get a new phone. I don’t really care about all my music in iTunes and pictures in the iCloud. They’re sharing 57 selfies Bug took on my apple tv screen saver but yet I can’t get an instagram photo that I want to blog about to download to my pictures folder on my laptop. So I said screw it. Since I’m all google now with my calendars and emails I might as well have a google phone too.
And that is part two of the many many changes that make me feel like I’m under water upside down with bubbles. At least I can still see the light, it’s just very very bubbly and I’m spinning. Maybe I’m a little nauseous from all the spinning.
The new phone is very pretty. It’s gold and it has a pearlized cover that makes it seem like a piece of jewelry. The sales woman at Verizon said that nine out of ten apple users return their droid phones and go back to apple. I’m determined not to be one of those nine. But I’m telling you, the newest operating system on the new phone is almost going to break me. Lollipop my ass. I feel like lollipopping Samsung for being such idiots. I don’t know why it’s so bad but it is constantly downloading something in the background and my battery lasts from 8am to 12 noon. Yeah. I can’t work like that.
I popped into the Verizon store the other day to ask if there were any tips or tricks to make my battery life last longer and they had no solutions for me. Everyone just kind of hung their head and said, Yeah. Lollipop sucks and we don’t know when they are going to fix it. They don’t tell us these things. Really? That’s the best answer they have for me? Surely that can’t be very good for sales. So some things I really like about the new phone but this is kind of a huge drag.
Especially when you are driving somewhere, using the your map app to get there and your phone starts turning off because the battery is overheated. I had the worst day yesterday. And I found out how much I have to pay in taxes because I finally filed them. Worst day ever.
I’m done complaining. I’m just tired. I think it’s hormones.
Hahaha!! Let’s talk about another big change in my life: Hormones.
You know how you go through all kinds of hormonal changes when you are a teenager? Guess what? It happens again when you get into your 40’s. I was a late bloomer hitting puberty so that means I’m an early bloomer to leave my reproductive years. I guess God just didn’t think I was much of a breeder. I’m okay with that, mostly. I’m just not okay with having so many mood swings. I’m falling apart all the time. I cry all the time. I finally get a good guy in my life who I really really love and want to spend time with and I’ve become this wretched emotional mess. I’m afraid I’m going to scare him away.
I have less patience with Bug. I’m struggling every day to be happy and kind and not snap at the littlest things. Some days I wake up and feel like a complete failure for no reason at all and I have no energy to fight it. I just want to hide away and not show my face until this passes. But I can’t do that. I just have to put on a brave face every day and hope I can duck away when the cracks start showing.
So I cut my hair. Because that’s what you do when you feel crappy about yourself. But now I miss my long hair. I think I look even uglier with short hair which I know is silly and ridiculous. My new short hair is cute and I’m learning to do it in fun new ways. I do like that it’s something different to work with everyday. But I miss my old long hair.
I’m so sorry to go on like this. But I know there must be other people out there struggling too and maybe you can help me. I’m desperately looking for help. I can’t afford doctors. That’s a whole other sore subject. I’m trying black cohosh today for the first time. I’m hoping it works. My mom says it does. She had a hysterectomy at 40 so can’t really help me but she says it’s helped a lot of people she knows. I don’t usually buy into herbal holistic cures but I’m pretty desperate.
And lastly, Bug. She’s changing too. Not bad changes though. Just, you know, typical pre-tween changes. She’s such a pre-teen even though she’s only nine. She acts like she’s 15 with all the attitude and trappings but then I’ll catch her playing with her beloved Shopkins and acting out the voices when she doesn’t know I’m listening. It warms my heart when she still acts like a little girl. I know even bigger changes are around the corner so I’m holding onto these last days of little girl-hood as best I can.
When I do bob up to the surface for air I look back on the beach and long for those days when we had all the time in the world to sit in the sun and make sandcastles and I didn’t even have a phone to check.
Not to sound all cliche but “This too shall pass.” I hope you feel a little better letting it all out. And your hair is FANTABULOUS!!! Don’t feel bad for losing patience with Bug. It happens to every mom out there. Kids are meant to test your patience. There’s no rule that says you can’t lose your shit from time to time. Trust me, I have three daughters and my oldest will be 9 in two weeks. Eeekk!! Hope you have a better week and great weekend!
Oh man. That last sentence just took me THERE and made me so wistful.
I laughed out loud at this: “Lollipop my ass. I feel like lollipopping Samsung for being such idiots.”
Keep on keeping on. I think you rock.
I had a Windows phone, it was awful. Then a Samsung, that had all sorts of crap I never used. Now I have an iPhone, love it.
I know there are all sorts of changes that happen with The Change. I’m emotional all the time too, but I’ve always been that way.
I tend to get really maudlin about the past :/
Some ideas that have been helping me are making sure to get in some daily exercise/dancing in, makes me feel a lot less stressed out afterwards and I seem to sleep better; watching that my blood sugar level stable, look into Chromium Picolinate supplement and try not to skip meals; fish oil and probiotics just seem to help with overall health; and here’s a biggie… cut down or eliminate the caffeine. I know, that last one is a bummer, but I’ve been sipping on Roastaroma by Celestial Seasonings and with a splash of creamer in it, this herbal seems to give me the aromatics of coffee and it’s made it much more doable to go without the caffeine. You’re already ahead of the game journaling out your frustrations, so maybe some of this other stuff will help. Love the new ‘do, by the way (it’ll grow back soon, so enjoy it while you can!).
Best from CO.
The switch to Google and Android has got to be crazy making but one day it will all click and be easier.
As for the phone, I don’t have yours but I do have an android and sometimes hate how long my battery doesn’t last. I have found some ways to help by turning off auto updates for apps as well as auto synch. Things like twitter and email will send signals constantly looking for updates which sucks battery life. My blue tooth stays off the majority of the time as well as location services – no one needs to know where I am unless I say, and if I’m going out of WiFi range or where I’m not going to need WiFi, I’ll turn that off too because it will ping for the signal too.
And putting the screen brightness on “Auto” is supposed to help with battery life.
re: Google Mail — what do you mean by “huge pile of random emails”? You can sort things into file folders by using “Move to” (from an individual email).
But maybe that’s not what you meant. The email threads are definitely a mess, and I have to wonder if anyone at Google is even using Gmail because I’ve seen zero improvement over the years.
Just deleted the rest because it’s turning into my own rant, to which you could rightfully say “Get your own blog, lady.”
My bit of advice: Do something nice for yourself every day.
Get the Mailbox app for your Gmail. It is perfect for getting your inbox organised. It’s a small thing but it saved me. I know the feeling. A little thing like that being out of whack doesn’t help everything else! Xx
I tried that. It made me crazier. If I could take an hour or so to actually set it up properly and use it, it probably would be great. But it honestly just stressed me out more.
Google mail is crazy making. I’ve given up lately. It’s going to come back to bite me. Luckily my professional life is all in Outlook.
I don’t have any advice but I wanted you to know, you aren’t alone. This whole “40’s hormone bullshit” is for the birds and I’m riding the roller coaster myself. Keep your head up.
Perimenpause and all its changes aren’t discussed enough- there’s no film in gym class that addresses all the annoyances. At 53, I will say this- it does get better. I remember feeling like I was in PMS mode for weeks on end and thinking, Sheesh! I hope I’m not like this forever. And then, like the phone problems, you forge ahead and things settle down. It’s a bit different but moods level out.
Love your haircut! Make sure you be kinder to yourself- in the face of daily frustrations I think women are their own harshest critics. I’ve been a fan of your blog since Bug was a baby. Kudos to you for the good job you are doing as a working mom.
I had almost a foot of hair cut off this past weekend, and I miss it desperately. You are not alone.
I also have been reading your blog for many years and it’s really the only blog I care enough to keep track of it. You write with such authenticity and kindness.
I felt compelled to connect somehow because your feelings in this post are so relatable. I am in my 40s too and it seems like all of a sudden my mortality is staring me in the face. It can be depressing sometimes and I look at younger people with such wistfulness even though I would never want to go back to that age.
No advise here though. You seem to live a life that keeps you very connected to people and I sense that is key.
I’m in the midst of enormous change too. Insecurities threaten to consume me whole at some point every day. But like you, I’m choosing not to let them. And that’s what it boils down to…a daily choice.
MacBook locks up and thinks its out of RAM (when it isn’t)? It’s okay.
Have to get it wiped and find out later that BackBlaze didn’t fully backup my computer the night before (although it said it did)? It’s okay.
Upload the Time Machine backup from over a week ago, which doesn’t have all my notes from my first week’s work at a new job? It’s okay.
Husband accidentally drills a hole through brand new air conditioning unit, which means the money we saved for “x” now goes to “y” and we barely make it to the next paycheck? It’s okay.
Worrying over taxes because we sold a home in 2014, but didn’t buy one until 2015? It’s okay.
Miss several key appointments because my iCal no longer syncs with my new operating system and is more difficult than getting into Ft. Knox? It’s okay.
This world? It’s a blink. From an eternal perspective, I realize none of this matters.
What matters is the relationships around us – the people we love. Jeff, the kids, my parents, family, friends like you, etc…
And all that? AMAZING.
I can SO RELATE. I have no good answers for you other than I know that taking good care of myself with eating, sleeping and exercise always makes a hug difference – more than I usually care to admit. Just sending you a big virtual hug and a knowing look. I hear you! And appreciate your sharing.
If I want to edit in photoshop, I have to get the photo from iPhoto (where the photos mysteriously go when they are downloaded) and save to my desktop then open in Photoshop. Too many steps I know, but that is how I get it to work now.
Hormones are crazy!!! Going through my own issues with them now, getting older can be great and evil at the same time. Thankfully Hubby admitted yesterday that it is so much easier for a guy to age hormonally!! Yup, they just slowly drop their hormones while ours rage. There is so much to try and do but it is finding the right mix for you.
Your hair looks fabulous!! Thankfully I have never cut mine short in desperation as I know I would miss it the next day :D
Hugs to you and just keep on trucking. xo
I LOVE the new app from Google Photos. it basically takes all the photos from you phone, puts them into the app. And you can access it from desktop too. (Although beware, if you delete from your phone, it’ll disappear from the app.) I just like the ease of it, you can actually search your photos! Like search for “flower photos” and flower photos will pop up. Might be a handy trick for you. Also, i LOVE your haircut.
First things first – the hair looks fabulous!! And tech stuff is crazy making..nothing makes me lose my stuff faster than a computer issue…
I cannot relate on the phone front as I have a non smart phone and am staying that way as long as I can get away with it. I keep hoping the world will wake up to how insane this “I must be connected at all times” mentality is and go back to basics like calling or whatever. I am home a good portion of my day, so being away from email and what have you is ok for me. Do I sometimes end up at a practice that was last minute cancelled? Yup…but usually a friend will call to alert me, or I call home and ask someone to check the coach’s email or whatever. The bonus is that I am not distracted at games or school events by checking email or social media like the people around me. I say a return to simpler times is needed!!
Take a walk, go to the beach or a park…create space and time where you can. When my patience is beyond thin or feel things are spinning out of control, slowing it all down works wonders, and usually re ignites the little kid in my kids!
We all have times where things just keep piling on…focus on the good. Every morning and every night recite a few things you are grateful for. Be kind. Appreciate kindness in others. It doesn’t change the crazy making stuff but it stacks the good a little higher than the bad and annoying trivial things and turns the mountains back into ant hills. And sleep – it is not overrated!!
Wow. You read my mind. Are you spying into my life and brain? You are such a great writer. I have struggled for so long to explain what is going on with me, and boom! You just did. I’ve spent my life looking forward to the future…growing up, finding a job I loved, getting married, having kids and now, I want time to stand still, or even go BACK in time. I miss the days that I thought were so difficult that I wanted to skip them by. Who would have known, those were the BEST days. My kids are still home, (12,14,16) but I know how quickly they grow up and leave and I’m not sure what to do with myself. UGH…all of this to say, I’m in it with you, Sister!
I’ve been following you (on and off) for years, now.
I was even your Facebook friend for sometime and then I just got weird and purged nearly everyone.
I came to work in tears, today. With all of the violence and shootings and hate flying and swirling around, I just can’t handle it.
So, I got off social media a little while ago and rediscovered your blog (because I still have you bookmarked from a couple of years ago). This post pretty much sums up how I feel some days. Changes are hard. Some days, harder than others.
Thank you for sharing…..you never know when or who your words reach…or, how badly someone maybe needed to read them to know they aren’t alone. xo