Thursday, February 25, 2016

Move Along, Nothing to See Here Folks

When I was four years old I was kidnapped by a stranger. This event happened at Coney Island Amusement Park in Brooklyn, N.Y., which coincidentally is the city of my birth.  I remember quite clearly that I did not cry at the time. I merely assessed the situation and knew the crazy lady with the babushka who took me by the hand and led me into the crowd was not my mother, or in fact anyone I knew.

Obviously I lived. The next day we went out to scavenge breakfast, I guess, since she didn't have any food in her hoarder's hovel, and as soon as I could I took off and ran away from her. A cop grabbed me, stuck an ice cream cone in my hand, reunited me with my parents, and off we went to our home on Long Island, never to hint at the experience again. That's how my parents chose to handle a crisis situation. I never spoke of it, they never mentioned it, and I never cried about it. I never trusted my parents after that, but I assumed all kids felt that way.

So now, some sixty-five years later, whenever I have a free moment I cry. My shrink is convinced it's the four-year-old locked up inside me crying because she never got the chance all those years ago. I am supposed to embrace her and make her feel safe. But all I want her to do is shut up already. Yes, we are safe. Nobody is going to take you, I mean me, I tell her, or us.  Please stop crying. Here, have some ice cream.

The brain is a devious organ. It is my least favorite of all the organs. I guess if I had to choose my favorite it would be my pancreas, as I never hear a peep out of it. I don't even know where it is or what it does, but it seems to work just fine without any attention from me.

I would like to make my brain as quiet as my pancreas. Supposedly if I meditate every day I can achieve this. That is a worthy goal, certainly as good as getting on Dancing With the Stars or winning the lottery. After all, if you win the lottery but your brain is always reminding you of traumatic events, what good will all the money do anyway?


  1. I guess even if your brain isn't broken, it's still not a place of pancreatic bliss. Good to know

  2. you dont have to post this . . . but this is one of the most profound and personal posts you've ever written . . . it is so fresh and so honest and so . . . i guess: likable . . . .

    I like hearing about the battle with the crybaby . . and it reminded me that you can never get a baby to stop crying by telling it to shut up but that, as you pointed out, ice cream usually does the trick.