My eyes closed in reflex as the cold water from the shower hit my head, I could literally count my pulse from the seemingly audible sound of my heart beating and the loud throbbing of the arteries in my head. I was feeling uneasy and desperately attempting to calm myself down, as well as drown myself. Whatever would cool me down? I was burning from the inside out.
I TOOK A DEEP BREATH…
My mind was in a fix contemplating what I could have or should have done. All the possible alternate scenarios were playing over and over in my head as my brain was whizzing through every permutation and combination for a different possible outcome than what just happened.
On the evening of the 26th of May 2018, my phone was stolen.
You’ve probably heard that advice that suggests that in a time of crisis; ‘do not panic!’ Let me tell you something you didn’t already know, it’s easier said than done. What a shocker!
I stood up with excitement in celebration of the equalizer Liverpool had just scored against Real Madrid and that was when it happened. I heard it fall, but looking at the floor, it was nowhere to be found and in that moment I froze. My brain could not process this information fast enough, I was confused. How can something fall and disappear almost immediately after you hear said thing hit the ground?
I went out with my ‘Host’ and a couple of friends to watch the finals of the 2018 UEFA Champions League. For those that don’t watch Football, it’s a pretty big deal. Prior to this day, we (my host and I) have been watching the matches leading up to this final indoors. But today was a special day, a great day as he called it. The atmosphere would be different. My host has been a long-time supporter of Liverpool FC and this was the year the “underdogs” came so close to clinching the title again. So obviously we had to see it outside, at a viewing center, with other people, because this joy deserved to be shared.
So much for sharing…
I’m not here to complain but to share the lesson this experience has taught me. There’s something about loss that brings clarity to the fore front of your mind.
“Lessons learned in pain tend to stick the longest”.
I’d lost a couple of phones in the past so that’s nothing new, but this was not just any phone. It was my primary connection to the internet, my notebook, my eBook reader, my music player, my voice recorder, my camera… the list is endless (well not literally) but you get the point. It was my all in one “creative device”. This was the first phone I really used to create stuff rather than just consume stuff. It had everything. I have a laptop too but I still needed my phone to get it on the internet. Point is this was a major blow, an unexpected major jab to the jaw.
I would have to start over. Like a punch forces you to take a step back and evaluate your next move(s), I did the same.
One more good reason excuse to procrastinate longer and not keep the schedule I set for myself.
Loss comes in different forms and sizes. The greater the loss, usually the more painful it is. In 2016, I lost the love of my life and it still hurts till today. That experience brought a new clarity on life and death but that’s a story for another day. The hardest part when it comes to dealing with the pain of loss is acceptance. Accepting that loss is hard. Urban culture would refer to it as taking that L. I cannot even begin to describe it, you can only know by going through it. Acceptance is really the only way to begin your healing.
I digress, let’s stick to the story at hand. Here are a couple of lessons losing my phone taught me;
LESSON 1: DO NOT PUT ALL YOUR EGGS IN ONE BASKET. This right here is a classic, we’ve heard it all before but I tell you again because lessons learnt in pain stick the longest.
LESSON 2: BACKUP BACKUP BACKUP! I’m not even going to dwell too much on this because thanks to the monthly backup I usually ran, I still have all my data before May 2018.
LESSON 3: YOU WILL NOT DIE. Even though the pain is terrifying, even though you have no idea what to do next, you shall overcome eventually, after searching and crying and cursing the whole world, you will come around to acceptance and you will start healing.
That’s all. But before you run off and lose your phone too here are some tips on what you could do, you know; preventive measures.
TIP 1: DO NOT KEEP YOUR PHONE ON THE TABLE OR CHAIR IN A PUBLIC SPACE. Do not be like me. As Nigerians would say, no be your papa house. (Translating from Nigerian pidgin: it is not your father’s house).
TIP 2: YOU CAN NEVER BE TOO CAREFUL SO, PROTECT YOUR DEVICE. I don’t care if it’s a 2 digit pin or a 2 million digit pin, or a pattern, or your fingerprint, or your face or your blood sample, there should be a lock on your phone. If you have data on that device, protect it. It might not totally prevent data theft, but it will surely delay it. I know you have nothing to hide, but if you use that device for financial transactions, LOCK IT.
TIP 3: SET UP FIND YOUR PHONE. For IOS and ANDROID, there are native app that does this and it is pretty straight forward to setup and use.
TIP 4: BACKUP! BACKUP!! BACKUP!!! As frequently as you can. You can use iCloud, Google drive, One drive, another device, a computer, a memory card, a flash drive etc. there are so many options. It’s a no brainer, JUST DO IT.
And in the event you ever lose your phone, here are some tips just for you. I know, I’m nice like that 😉
TIP 5: FIND IT. I mean, who wouldn’t right? but before you jump to acceptance and move on, spend quality time in looking for it, ask people around you. Depending on the scenario, there might be a good chance of finding it. Remember that find my phone app? Now is a good time to see if it works. You can also report it to Law enforcement too, it doesn’t hurt.
TIP 6: CALL YOUR BANK ASAP. Time is of the essence here and you do not have a lot it. Disable all your accounts if you use your phone for mobile payments and transactions or if your phone number is linked to your account. You know, damage control.
TIP 7: MORE DAMAGE CONTROL. After you’ve called your number over and over and it is still switched off or unavailable, call you network provider and disable your SIM. I did this after 3 days (acceptance), you can then proceed to request for a SIM replacement and get your number back.
BONUS TIP: ACCEPT IT.
If you learnt something, please share this. If I told you everything you already know, also share this.
Everyone has a story to tell. Everyone has lost. Everyone has experienced pain. Please share your story.
Liverpool went on to lose the match.
Thanks for reading. Cheers!
2 thoughts on “LOSS”
Thanks for sharing and thanks for the advice. I really hope I learn some lessons because I’m very good at putting all my eggs in one basket when it comes to phones. But you’re
right. It’s not the end of the world. Nothing is, except of course, THE END itself. Lol.
This was fun, acceptance sure is key.
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