My mom left me with a DVD of pictures from when my brother and I were kids. It’s strange to see yourself in places you have no recollection, in a life you can’t remember, in days that without the images would cease to exist. But here the days are – brightly colored, held close, safe. We were filthy kids. Filthy! Rolling around in the dirt, I swear my mouth had a perm-ring of food or dust or plant life or paint.
There are so many things I could have become – roads that, when you’re a child, seem infinite. Either they narrow as we age or we intentionally block off the ones we will not and cannot take. Isn’t that how our brains work anyway? As children our brains and neuron paths are exploding, expanding, grasping and as we age, the connections we don’t use are broken to conserve energy. We slow down. It becomes harder to turn around. Our brains are programmed to turn off when things get difficult and the only way to pave a new road is practice, turn the difficult into normal, trick your brain. There are whole studies about this, the motivation/brain/creative/you’re never as smart as you were as a child/hitting a nail over the head a million times theory, but isn’t it just like us to be born into a body constantly trying to trick itself into happiness? God, no wonder we are so complicated…

PS – I love the photos where I’m looking to my older brother asking him to take me somewhere new.

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