2nd April 2022

Life is unquestionably a catalogue of checks and balances, inclusive of many gains and losses, successes and failures. The process of aging accelerates and highlights these changes most clearly. In truth we have no specific choice in any of the happenstances that occur, we are placed by fate in the most frustrating and equally relaxing position of being but a passenger on the Ferris wheel as it rotates according to some mysterious masterplan far above our pay grade.

The two gains that immediately spring to mind is firstly the very satisfying ability to fall asleep as often as I choose, whatever time of day or night might be available and practical. When younger I found napping most difficult, with the one exception of when laying upon a sun kissed Mediterranean beach listening to the nicely warm waves lapping on the shoreline. Now show me a flat surface and a pillow and within a few moments I will graciously oblige. The second would be the capacity to accept loneliness as a consequence of disreputable behavior, and my impropriety can at times be most ungainly, do please excuse the unforced pun.

That second accrual brings me most suitably to my first major loss, a total forfeiture of any chance of having a long-term adult relationship with a partner, permanent or temporary, completely based upon my inability to control my decidedly exploratory nature. My endless search for greener grass has ever and always led me, in the words of the folk song, ‘Over the hill and far away’. My second, and in many ways most more depressing sense of loss is in the distancing, and in some cases complete banishment from personal family. Those of you with sharp minds will spot that the two depletions are quite possible closely related, I would agree wholeheartedly, and accept any subsequent blame unconditionally.

Win or lose I have found each moment a beneficial and empowering experience, even when the negatives have heaped more sorrow upon my soul that my frailty should endure. Do I apologize, not at all? Good or bad I ever tried my damndest, to be singular and exceptional. Can we be expected to do more?

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