As I write this now I am getting anxiety about being able to type as fast as my mind can hang on to it’s thoughts. The terror of thinking up some amazing bit of story or information, then it slipping away from you as fast as it came, is the worst feeling when trying to write. Your mind is it’s own little pit of quick sand. It swallows up experiences, feelings, thoughts, epiphanies and hides them away somewhere in the eternal caves and holes of this non locatable memory land.
I feel as though there is a secretary in my brain’s memory department. Whenever she was called upon to find a name, a quote from a film, or a various fact, she would hop out of her seat to go check the file cabinet for it, then have it back to me in a flash. This was a most efficient set up for many years and my abilities to recall my memory files were done at a most satisfactory speed. Now however, this secretary has aged. Her shoes boast arch supporting orthotics, and her graying hair is tied up in a collapsing messy bun, most likely with a pencil she has been looking for stuck somewhere in it. Instead of the former spritely response time and clarity with which she would whisper to me the information I needed, I am stuck with my brow furrowed and a squint as I wait for her to putter through the file cabinets slowly, due to a now arthritic knuckle condition.
I am left in an awkward no man’s land where the only power I have is to ask her questions while she looks slowly. “Well did you check over by the ‘Song Lyrics’ shelf? I’m trying to remember the name of that song that Brandy and Monica did a duet in, in the 90’s… Did you check the ‘90’s’ file cabinet, sometimes files fall behind there and gets lost?…Well what about this ‘Pop Culture’ floppy disk?” She just looks up at me with an emotionless blink and keeps flipping through drawers. However slow she may be, she is usually dependable to come through at some point in the day. I will have given up and moved on, this hopefully will not have resulted in anything too embarrassing, like not remembering someone’s name, or freezing while rapping the entire song “Shoop” by Salt-N- Pepa, and she will out of nowhere slap the information on my desk hours later. She may be slow but she usually doesn’t quit until the job is done.
I try and do things to keep her in good shape. I heard somewhere that if you have an older dog you should get a puppy so it keeps the older one more active. I’m not sure how that would be executed with my brain secretary; I don’t have the ability to suck youthful souls out of children Hocus Pocus style. I thought instead, it would be helpful to journal and use word association. The journaling allows me to hang onto all of those feelings and experiences from the past. They are all so out of sight out of mind that I feel as though a whole part of me is gone off lost somewhere. Some of me should be off lost somewhere though. (Any entry from Jr. High to High school days is pretty painful to read. They are extremely ridiculous, hormone driven, and I am ashamed at my utter stupidity and gigglyness.)
I think that it will be a tough thing to loose ability in my body and be a limited aging vessel. I think it will be even more difficult to lose control of the mind. I feeling of being trapped in your own brain and not able to use it correctly would be torture. If that ever happens, old lady Aubrey will probably just start doing a lot of psychedelic drugs and just ride it out from there. I figure my mind will already be lost… why not give it some fun colors and shapes to look at while it wonders. Besides, the brain secretary will need a day off by then.