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Friday, May 06, 2005
 
Freedom
I think. A lot. And worry. And obsess. And daydream . . . sometimes drifting off in the middle of a conversation. Or driving. I was sitting at a red light at 5:53 yesterday with my daughter behind me in the carseat, a light drizzle coming down, and Def Leppard’s “Pour Some Sugar on Me” on the radio, and all I could focus on was the drumbeat. I mean, how did the one-armed guy play all that?

I want freedom. Not the “freedom” that we’re supposedly helping the Iraqis fight for, or the freedom to escape my immediate-family obligations (although not having to be my mother’s caretaker might be nice), but a free mind. I can’t remember the last time I didn’t feel put-upon and encumbered.

I was walking down the stairs at work a few days ago, and I had a very brief lapse into how my mind used to be (largely uncluttered), making me very aware of my surroundings . . . content. Very peaceful. Unfortunately, it lasted for about two seconds.

I know there’s probably a medication out there that could make me feel this way all the time. But I’m afraid of blocking this all out, like some mental packrat who doesn’t want to throw anything away for fear that he’ll need it later. And what if the mental summersaults I’m doing now will keep my mind limbered up if/when I hit my 70s and 80s? Maybe neurotic people are better-preparing their brains to fight Alzheimer’s.