where wildly different is perfectly normal
It’s a matter of bandwidth
It’s a matter of bandwidth

It’s a matter of bandwidth

It's a Matter of BandwidthMacDreamy2 is showing his age lately. He’s four years old and gets heavy, heavy use. If it’s not me pounding out blog posts (which have been sadly rare these days) or a snarky Facebook update or answering yet another email (Sisyphus would have lurved email) or working in multiple tabs while streaming music, it’s the boys Minecrafting something-or-other or Andy kersnurggling the glafoigan so as to twiddlywink the schnooperdiflagen. Humor me, I have no damned clue what he’s doing. But my beloved MacDreamy2 is sluggish and hangs and if I see a rainbow beach ball in real life I may try to stab it with my car keys. Far too much of my life lately is sitting and waiting for MacDreamy2 to move his ass.

So six or so weeks ago I bought an external hard drive, thinking that only 5% available memory on my hard drive might be the culprit. Got everything moved and…no change. A month ago I worked with a tech on the phone for over an hour and…no change. I’ve tweaked settings and quit using certain programs (Mail, you life-sucking hog, you’d better improve under Yosemite so help me…iPhoto, I hate you…) and…no change. I’ve maxed out the RAM, it scored a new logic board last year, the computer really should be smokin’. Something hiding deep in the background is hogging all the resources and making my MacDreamy2 suck little green frogs. Any simple request and it flashes me a rainbow beach ball before sullenly honoring my request. God forbid I try to do anything with photos or movies. Simple requests do it in.

Oh, the ironic parallels to my own life right now.

Just as there seems to be something hiding in the background hogging my computer’s bandwidth, something is hogging mine too. I make a simple request of myself and instead of a rainbow beach ball a mental obscene gesture to the universe pops up. It’s all I got, there’s nothing left. There is no bandwidth for that request. The beach ball spins lazily on the computer, the mental finger waves in the air.

I’m sick of making decisions, I’m sick of being asked to make decisions. I’m sick of trying to figure out what to do with the boys, so they sit and computer something most of the day until their brains scramble and I’m sick of that. I want to write more, but I’m sick of thinking. I’m sick of being chronically underemployed and the ramifications on the budget. I’m sick of the dog always underfoot, stink and all. I’m sick of my computer and my phone sluggishly responding to anything I try to do, sick of anything I fix or clean not staying that way longer than a day, I’m sick of a lot of things. It all takes mental effort, and that’s just too much effort or something something.


No bandwidth. Case in point: I started writing this post at the end of July. Nearly three weeks later I returned to this site and started writing again, after freaking out because I couldn’t log in and couldn’t remember the password; it then took another three days of poking at this before I hit publish.

MacDreamy2 is slightly better now. I dingled the something-or-other and it’s a little zippier. Me? Not so much. I still have a chronic case of What The Hell Is Wrong With The World with the comorbid conditions Screw It All and The Shit Can Quit Hitting The Fan Now Thankyouverymuch. All the positive thinking and “manifest your intentions” and inspirational Pinterest posters haven’t helped. Story may be my word of the year, but right now it really feels like I’m writing myself into a corner, and really not caring all that much.

It’s a dirty mix of compassion fatigue, decision fatigue, attention fatigue, homeschool fatigue, parenting fatigue, society fatigue, and fatigue fatigue, handcuffed to a brain bruised by it all. It’s as though my mind has been filled with blow-in foam, packing every crack and crevice and solidifying. That foam is an over-active, hyper-alert mind, because the last few years have beaten it into me that you can’t trust the simplest things anymore. That schools will provide an appropriate education, that foods will be safe and our bodies will welcome them without complications, that if you are a hard worker employment will be steady and salary will reflect that, that people will do what they say they will do…have all been proven to me to be untrue, and it’s DIY or bust.

There is no white space in my head, no room for a deep breath, no space to take an idea and chew on it and see what comes out. There are too many background programs running, using up precious resources.

It’s a matter of bandwidth, and mine is all used up.


This is simply a generalized rant by someone who just doesn’t give a rat’s ass about much right now, and a rough explanation of why I’m not making any more decisions, taking on any new anythings, and scraping from my plate as much as I can. 


  1. QH

    I was going to write something hopefully somewhat if vaguely inspiring, but JenC made me spit Crystal Lite on my monitor and now I can’t remember what I was going to say. Um, I’ll just default to *hugs.*

    1. Jen

      I cannot take responsibility for monitor-spitting. 😉
      Also, I finally caught up on your last dozen of posts and crap, I’m sorry you’re going through your own circles of hell. 🙁

  2. KK

    Hey Jen,

    Met you briefly at SENG. So grateful for this post. I’ve been going through a lot of transitions, and just found a great schooling solution for my daughter, but I’m just worn down the the nub. It’s like as the intensity gets turned down on my life from completely unbearable to theoretically manageable if only I had a ton more $$, and a staff of 3, I find myself using the extra breathing room to hyperventilate.

    I hope you get some of your oomph back, but for now it may just be the last 6-8 years catching up with you.

Whaddya think?

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