The Intensity of an Unfettered Soul

I will be the first to admit, I have always been a prideful man. I am proud of my family, my friends, the capabilities and potentials they have, the things they’ve done, who they are. There are far worse things to be prideful about, but nevertheless it is just as bad as any other thing to be proud of: it creates the illusion of merit based acceptance, instead of accepting purely for the sake of acceptance.

I visited my grandmother today, a woman whom has done more in her life than most. She raised five children, traveled the globe, embroiled herself in community projects, and otherwise occupied herself with always something. She is extremely intelligent, with a degree from Radcliffe; if one were to try to think of an example to sum up the type of person she is, I would recall that she gave my father permission to marry my mother because he managed to beat her at Scrabble. She could do the New York Times crossword puzzle in under an hour (and would do so, regularly).

She is now 90, half paralyzed, and bed-ridden. Her mental facilities (in particular her short term memory) have eroded because of this, and I am simultaneously furious and upset to see her like this.
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