Hey, Kay! Give me a break, okay?

From Kay Redfield Jamison’s “An Unquiet Mind: “There is nothing good to be said for it [bp depression] except that it gives you the experience of how it must be to be old, to be old and sick, to be dying; to be slow of mind; to be lacking in grace, polish, and coordination; to be ugly; to have no belief in the possibilities of life, the pleasures of sex, and the exquisiteness of music, or the ability to make  yourself and others laugh.”

Gee, Kay. You’ve not given this old codger much wiggle room, now have you? Is this what I, at 76, have soon to look forward to? Of the options you’ve listed, the most devastating will be the loss of laughter in myself and that I could always coax it forth in others, and do so simply by being me.

I can and am prepared to do so, I think, in my approaching dotage, be accepting and accommodating of sickness, impending death, the loss of grace and polish—if indeed I ever was graceful or polished—trolldom, monumental cynicism, unrequited love, and deafness, just so long as my mind—my one unflagging joy—is still with me right up to the very end. I want my last words to be, “Mother of God, what a show! Thank you, Lord, I wouldn’t have missed it for the world, bent mind and all.”

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