I have some answers. The answers occurred to me on my morning walk. They were stimulated by the difficulty of the walk. I did not take my allergy and asthma medicines, even though I could tell, when I arose and looked in the mirror this morning, from my beat-up face, that I needed the medicines. I started to jog. My muscles felt like freshly poured concrete, setting fast. I couldn't breathe deeply. I persisted nonetheless, slowly. After I decompressed, following the jog, I extended my walk by a longer route home. The delight I usually take in the early morning light - the deeper greens of grass, the lingering lawn sprinklers, flowers of pink, red, and yellow in bushes lining driveways and alleys - did not rise to greet me. Then - there - some answers occurred to me.
I don't trust. I don't trust my body. I don't trust my body not to fail me. I don't trust my mind. I don't trust my mind not to fool me with illusions. Because I do not trust, I extend my mind further, pushing rationality in all directions, imposing rationality on my body. I don't have body intuition; so I quiz my body and compensate by thrusting rationality through every pore, every capillary, every full or depleted vessel.
Why don't I trust? I know this answer, too. This answer, too, came to me on the walk. I don't trust because I am afraid. Afraid of what? Afraid of abandonment. Fear of being abandoned by people I love, by friends, by strangers, by bureaucracy, by technology: fear of abandonment is the emotional template of my personality, laid down in my childhood, long ago. I can trace the fear of abandoment through remembered episodes in my past, before last year, before the last decade, back through marriages, through stages of adulthood, through teenagehood, back into the mists of childhood, back to crib scenes. Memories entrain memories, clanking along the line like box cars in a train when the locomotives slowly begin to pull their freight forward. Iron couplings grip into iron couplings, thumping and yawling in gutteral metallic groans, back from the engines toward the end of the long long entrainment of cars.
I know these answers. I sense that they are not all the answers. I don't know the question. The question is like a distant train station. I don't know whether the question was the station from which my train departed, or is the station toward which it pulls. I sense that I should not push to know the question. I should wait. I should trust. Perhaps the question would occur to me, somewhere along an early morning walk.