Update on the Mp3 player. I actually could not handle walking the track and listening to music at the same time. After almost 120 days without music it was literally too much. For now, I started listening to music the way people used to. I lay down (on my bunk) and just listen to it.
Music isn’t background noise. I don’t do anything else while I listen to it. I’m in that moment enjoying every part of the song.
The screen time aspect of this little device, which is about the size of a matchbook, has been interesting. It’s a barebones mp3 player. You turn it on and have four menus. Music, radio, audio books and settings. That’s it. There’s nothing to play with, nothing to scroll through.
The day after I purchased it I caught myself turning it off, then wanting to pull it out of my pocket a few minutes later. Uh oh. Besides the fact that there’s nothing to ‘do’ with it I was fairly repulsed by the idea. It made me appreciate how good I’m becoming at sitting somewhere, being bored or indifferent, but feeling neither fidgety or uncomfortable. I haven’t used the mp3 player in that manner again and while an iPhone is a different story, I’m hoping I can work hard to not use my phone in the same way I used to. I would say that I would rather read a book, but beyond that, I am experiencing how okay it is to simply be and not need to be entertained. There’s a chance that learning to find peace around 150 other loud inmates has something to do with that, but I think it’s a fundamental idea that will translate well into life back home.