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By: Carlos Mendoza

I wanted to explore the “why” in mental health. Our existence is up to us in many ways (in some ways not). But in the ways they are are often minimized or seen as trivial. But what if we lost the ability to even be aware? Isn’t it a blessing, and indeed a prickly thorn, to be aware of ourselves and our minds? We even get to ask “why?” and if we can do that, then it seems to matter to do something about the health of our minds.

Honorable Mention · Adult Writing (2022)

I lost my mind once. Misplaced it somehow. Maybe by the coffee pot, or the shoes by the stairs, or possibly lost with my keys. I’m not so sure where my mind went off to then, but I was certain I would stumble across it, eventually. So, I went on with my Monday only to find that I didn’t mind anything. I didn’t mind the changing news of the world or experiences stirring inside me. I didn’t mind the pangs of my own hunger or the croaks of people demanding me to do this and that. It was difficult to mind my own business let alone anyone else’s. And so, I went through the day paying no mind since I had no mind with which to pay. Before I knew it, the day ended, but with no mind to be aware of the ending. I honestly didn’t mind at all. I even slept blankly, as if in a tomb. Then before I knew it, it was a Sunday. There was no need to account for time or care one way or another in my isolated Elysium. Everything just was. The world went by, and I with it, only I didn’t care. 


But then I found it.  


My mind, right where I left it. I opened the trash to toss it, since it seemed so useless to keep. But I put it on, for old times’ sake.  


All the dread and despair of being alive flooded me. I almost chucked it out at once! But it was too late. I was re-minded and remembered what it meant to mind. So, my mind was set— 

my mind was mine and mine alone to keep, mindfully or mindlessly. 

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