Do I Need an Optarectomy?

What’s that? An operation that blocks someone from seeing the world through their own asshole. I need one right now.  Another word for that view might be depression. Depression, the kind-of want to stay in bed all day, covers piled high, and not DO anything.  The kind that makes your skin crawl and eyes tear to look at headlines of homicides and unemployed masses and the struggles of aging seniors, and know deep inside why Andrew Weil puts letting go of listening to the news on his list of top Seven Secrets to Good Health. Depression that pollutes past delusional dreams of publishing grandeur with the reality of doing just that, and a new-found humility and reticence to be so public about my life; combined with the not-knowing how to fictionalize it or anything. Creative non-fiction personal essay has been my genre.

Anti-dote? Not surgery, would that it could be that easy. Perhaps medication, but I’m reassessing whether that ‘better living through chemistry’ thing is for me. Meditation might help, if I practiced it regularly, or took another 10 day stint of Vipassana.

No, the true elixer is gratitude. Heartfelt surrender to the good in my life: the sunshine and 55 degree temperatures when the rest of the country is piled high with snow. Shouting ‘thank you!’ outloud when I walk on beaches like these within two miles of my house. Deep down appreciation for all the loves I’ve enjoyed and still have. Thankfulness that this aging body at almost 66 has only had a few natural symptoms of its decline: hearing loss that’s correctable, vision macularly degenerated but held at bay by advanced scientific injections paid for by Medicare and AARP’s United Health Care Supplemental. How bad is that?

Let go Pat. Continue to live your life as you love it. Fake it gracefully, temporarily if need be. That’s what you need, a gratitude list, not an operation! This too shall pass.

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