I think a lot.
One of my first memories was reading a Children’s Bible in my bedroom around 4 years old. The story talked about how when we die we would go to heaven and sing God’s praises for eternity.
At four years old I didn’t know a lot about life but I knew that I didn’t want to live forever. I wanted to know that some day there would be an end. The thought of the infinite was (an remains) terrifying.
Thirty years later I still find myself quite often caught up in a philosophically spun labyrinth of an existential thought. Mini-epiphanies accompanying grim realizations. Oftentimes leading me to seek affirmation on impulse.
It’s hard not having anyone to share these Debby-isms with. So my friends often awake to randomly cryptic messages.
“I want to be an Indian woman. I want to wear saris and vermilion in my hair”.
“I am going to convert (or is it simply vert since I am not really anything now?) to Buddhism. Also, I have to get back to yoga”.
Stuff like that.
Stuff that my close friends have come to expect, not really question, and respond appropriately to.
It’s just that my mind is always spinning. I get some amazing ideas. I get some whacked out ideas. It’s true. But I just can’t take anything for face value. I like this about me – most of the time.
My son has inherited many of my traits; including a profoundly inquisitive thought process.
For a child who struggles with communication there are moments when he says something with such universal truth that I am truly choked with emotion.
Tonight at bedtime, there was this:
Me: How was school today?
EB: Good. Tricky.
Me: What was tricky?
EB: Life is bad.
Me: What is bad?
EB: Even when something is easy it is hard.
Me: I know you work hard. I’m sorry it’s so tricky.
EB: It’s okay, Mommy. Goodnight.
There was no despair in his voice. He reported this to me simply as fact. He works hard. Always. Even when things are easy they are harder for him. He realizes this. He accepts it. It breaks my heart, but to him it just is.
I imagine that we’ve each come to a similar conclusion at one time or another.
But he is six.
And to think that all I knew at six was that I didn’t want to live forever.