"Well, there is more to life than just experience."
I heard myself saying the words and I knew they were false. As I got towards the end of the sentence I faltered and made the needed modification.
"Well, there is more to life than just... those experiences."
That was it.
I was chatting with an old friend and I was trying to find a way to praise my life without outright denouncing hers, and the choices she had made.
I wasn't sure if I believed what I was saying. I only believed enough of it for me to keep talking.
"There are other qualitative experiences in life that you've deprived yourself of by choosing to live life the way that you have."
Nope, could have done better than that, should have done better than that.
"How?", she asked.
"Well, others have had different experiences that they enjoyed more fully because they experienced them at a younger age, an access to sensations that are no longer open to you. You may experience all that you want, but now you must accept that you will be experiencing it under different circumstances, having aged."
It was getting worse, there was nothing I could do. I tried to save myself:
"But perhaps some of those things are more fully enjoyed with the ripeness of age, there is no standard by which we can adequately compare."
"But you have always said..."
"Well, perhaps age is not the almighty comparative measure, it is only an indication of the richness one feels for life, but not the criterion by which we measure the depth of all experience. Perhaps death is greater than birth because we have the memories of life by which to sense the loss."
Fuck, what had I done.... What was I doing?
I was dying...