too much

“Oh look! Tater tots!”

“Ah no. I had too many tater tots once when I was a kid and I can’t eat them anymore.”

But tater tots are so good!

There is a word for this:

I met someone this weekend, a former professional orchestral musician who can no longer listen to classical music. If she is getting a massage and they have it playing, she makes them change it to some other music.

A life without tater tots is sad. Still, there plenty of other kinds of food one can have.

This musician had spent her life mastering a particular skill. She’d learned it and then the music she’d labored over turned to sand in her mouth.

LIfe is long, and people can fall out of love. People fall out of love of the ones they are married to, and fall out of love of their life’s work. And there is something within me that needs to be happy.

Thomas Jefferson said the right to pursue happiness is self-evident. I know I have to follow what draws me.

But there is another part. Since this is a right, it is also a responsibility. I have to pay attention to what matters to me. It’s a dishonor to myself to neglect my happiness.

Those tater tots would still be delicious if that little kid hadn’t over-indulged.

What if that musician had paid attention earlier on and stepped back from the music before it became utterly distasteful?

Marriages have to be tended. Many relationships could be saved with the right attention at the right time.

That scares me. I’ve worked too hard to achieve what I thought would bring me happiness to let it all be undone with inattention

It’s very easy to stop paying attention.

In fact, it is so easy it is inevitable. I do it all the time.

Am I doomed? Where can I find a magic amulet to guard against this nightmare?

Ah, now I remember. I know this!

All it takes is motion.

If I’m moving I’m not dead.

I have to take an action in the direction I want to go. I do have to pay attention to what I want. I’ve let it get buried before, I know.

I’ll have to trust myself to remember what I want.
Keep it on the to do list.

There is a lot more than tater tots at stake.