I wish I’d known at twenty-one, when I developed a chronic illness and became suddenly alienated from all my peers, that over the decades, one by one, all of them would come join me on my island.Sarah Manguso, 300 Arguments
I come back to this quote a lot these days, thinking about it from the perspective of losing a loved one early in life, or becoming a caregiver, or any of the other life circumstances that hit us before we feel they “should.” It’s a weird construct, when you get right down to it. These things happen all the time, so what undergirds the idea that they’re aberrant?
I’m much further into reading Stephen Jenkinson’s Die Wise than I was a couple months ago. (Funny how I can’t crack into a book that gets too directly at my current lived experience while I’m right up close to it. I had to go to another state before I could find a way in. I’m hooked now, though.) As far as he’s concerned the undergirding is a sense of entitlement; this particularly North American obsession with individuality and control and comfort.
The book’s full of things I feel like I’ll need a long, long time to process.