Sunday, September 23, 2007

The Misery of the Human Condition

bunny's head in the clouds

A few days ago, my first cousin gave birth to a pink, wrinkled, hairless thing the paternal unit refers to as "quite a pretty baby".

I didn't visit yesterday but am secretly glad I skipped it, partly because a day out cycling at east coast held 10 times more appeal, but mostly because babies make me nervous and skipping the visit meant avoiding bickering relations whose idea of a battle-of-wits is arguing over whichcarparkismoreaccessible and waityouarelostnoiamnot.

The bane of my restlessness is that the mind goes into overdrive, and depression sets in over such mundane worries as how everything could be different if we could turn back time. Would I have done many things differently? Made harsher decisions? Stayed strong and independent when I had to? Kept the ones who meant so much closer than I actually did?

I walked the neighbourhood market this morning and an old couple hobbled past. The man looked healthy; greying but stout and healthy looking. His wife's limbs were deformed and she walked with great difficulty.

I think about how our minds have so much capacity for growth, for thought, for consciousness; yet we are trapped in this shell, limited to what our physiology allows.

Although most of our limitations that ground us are stemmed from our lack of nerve.

I think about the little wrinkled hamster my cousin just produced, and wonder what it he must be thinking. Can he even be thinking very much? Possibilities must be limitless.

As I grew up, a world of opportunity greeted me. The more I learnt, the more ambitious I became.

Later in life, I looked forward with caution. And as I cast my eyes toward the horizon, I see possibilities -- closing before me unceremoniously.

I think of how my body will fail me; my mind, fighting a losing battle with my broken machinery, trapped in an ailing shell, only to be comforted by the constant administration of drugs that will only slow the inevitable regression.

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