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An iPad and the 5 Stages of Grief

An iPad and the 5 Stages of Grief

I know you were losing sleep over my lost iPad, I know I was.

I have a hectic life.  Clients, 3 dogs, a five year old, and a to do list that only grows.

I tend to get lost in the frustrations of the day. I am always running a bit late and often forget to stop and enjoy the moment.  And with many competing demands, I am easily distracted.  We have lost gloves, hats and what not on the train, but this felt different.  I lost my iPad.  A little piece of electronics, I know but seriously I was crushed.  The iPad has been my primary camera since I got it, it connects me to Instagram, it’s where I check email and yes I even use it for boarding passes at the airport.  Unbeknownst to me, I really like my iPad and somehow I felt lost without it. Yeah, I could replace it, but they are not cheap.  I was devastated.

An iPad and the 5 Stages of Grief

Denial – “It has to be here!” I emptied my backpack, I went through my office. There is just no way I would lose my iPad.  I went over and over the places it should have been, but as hard as I tried, it was gone.

Anger – As I worked through various stages of grief – anger, bargaining – I tried to replay those fatal moments when we were parted.  I don’t usually take my iPad with me to pick up my daughter, but I was trading emails with a client over the upcoming meeting. “If it wasn’t for that damn meeting, I’d still have my iPad.”

Bargaining“Oh please, let me find it.”  I said prayers even though i am not particularly religious. Which saint is the patron saint of lost things. Joseph? No, he’s real estate. Jude? no, he’s lost cases, not ready to admit that one, yet. For the record, it’s Saint Anthony should you need him.

Depression – Devastated, but not without hope.  I tried to retrace my steps.  OK, I had it on the bus home because I checked emails and spoke to a client about an upcoming meeting in Dublin.  That’s the last thing I remember.  So, I must have left it on the bus, ugh!

BVG who runs the bus service in Berlin has an online lost and found.  No iPads found today. Getting gloomy.  Headed over to iCloud, tried to find my iPad but since it was off line, no such luck.  I enabled the lost device and posted my phone number to be displayed should some one turn on my iPad.  I went to bed sad, but surely someone would find it and call.  I even posted on Craigslist. I am not sure anyone in Berlin uses Craigslist but desperate times call for desperate measures.

The next morning no calls.  Nothing new on BVG. And the iCloud indicated my device hadn’t been online.  My poor iPad lying in a ditch somewhere.  I’m sorry I took you for granted.

I tried to get some work done, but seriously my iPad was all alone in a big, bad world.  Would we ever be reunited? I was beginning to lose faith.

Mid day I received an email from my friend Steven would said he had meditated on the return of my iPad and sent his blessings. Namaste.  Bhudda, Jesus, Mother Merkel, whoever was listing, please return my iPad.  I was covering all bases.

My daughter asked me, “Daddy, why are you sad?”

“I lost my iPad” I replied.

“I am sad, too”, she replied.

Acceptance – Well, all was not lost. I regularly back up my pictures on Google, so I least I didn’t lose memories.  I headed over to Google pics to reminisce over the moments my iPad and I had shared.

Wait, there’s a picture I took at BikiniBerlin.  Not a very creative or memorable picture, it was a picture of a bike with a bottle of whiskey in the drink holder. I took it with the intent of sharing it with some friends of mine who had biked with me from Amsterdam to Paris a few years back.  But a very important picture in deed.  See we stopped at BikiniBerlin after the bus, which means the iPad was not left on the bus.

“OK, so I took the picture then what? The baboons of course!” There’s a big window on the ground level that overlooks the baboons in the zoo.  My daughter and I sat there for a few moments to argue about whether I would buy her an ice cream.  The answer was no.

I’m not a mean guy, but we try to limit sweets and it was before dinner and…. Well, you get the point.  We left there and headed to Kaisers to grab a few groceries before heading home.  I can’t remember having the iPad at Kaisers, so I’m guessing Bikini.

It felt like the clouds had parted.  Had Bhudda come though after all? I headed over to Bikini and after a few inquiries was directed to the security office on the upper level.  Before the guard would check he asked for my passport, which lo and behold I had left at home.  Yeah, it was just one of those weeks.  A guy with no ID wanted to peruse lost and found for iPads.  “What color is your iPad?” he asked.  “It’s in a brown case.” I replied.  “But, what color is your iPad?” he asked again.  “Uhm, white, no silver” – clearly not the right answers. “Wait, it’s gold” I had forgotten since I haven’t taken the cover office since day one.  He then produced my iPad.

You would have thought he had found my long lost puppy. I was so happy, I promised myself I wouldn’t cry.  But he was  skeptical, no ID and it took three guess to get the color.  The iPad has a thumbprint feature to unlock it, of course in my haste to try to prove my identity, it didn’t work.  Things were going south, fast.

“Do you at least know the pin code?” It was getting really pathetic and you could tell he was trying to help me.  I do, and it worked. Somewhere Peaches and Herb were singing “Reunited.” He gave me my iPad and even the other guard behind the desk had to smile.

So a big thank you to Security at BikiniBerlin.

As for the picture, the Amsterdam Paris team loved it.

Mike Doherty

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