I write with a somber note. Today, my thoughts are turned to all those who have lost someone. And to those they lost.
It is a harrowing matter to consider and many would not wish to write about it. Why relive a moment in which you felt like your world would never be the same again? Why talk about it when it is perhaps the most pain you felt in a long time? But I am a writer. When something bothers me, I put it to words. I take away its hold on me in the only way I know how.
I remember a night from when I was 10 years old. I was tossing and turning in bed until a thought shook me awake. I walked over to my parents room and sat at the foot of their bed. I sat there for hours thinking about only one thing – “Someday, I would lose them. On that day, it’d be just me against the world with no one to turn to for advice. And no one to clean up the messes I made.” After a few hours, I forgot all about it and went on with my day. But, I’d be lying if I said that I do not think about that night quite often.
To contemplate the end of a life is hard. To live through it even more so. But, it is perhaps one of the few things we do know with absolute certainty. There is so much we love to predict. Right from the weather to stock markets around the world. So much of our life revolves around predicting but we often look away from this one certain fact – The people around us will pass on someday and so will we.
But, what do we know about what comes after death? No offense to any religious beliefs, but what do we really know? Who amongst us can truly predict what comes after? Not a single soul that still walks and breathes on this earth can foretell the journey of one that has crossed over. I find solace in this lack of knowledge. I would like to believe that a better world awaits. That it is simply a door to the next life. Perhaps the night here is somewhere else a dawn.
Another thought that comforts me is about what death gives us, rather than what it takes away. In a way, it is what love roots from. We love and hold close those we love because we know that they must leave someday. Imagine wishing an eternal life for one you love. Is it truly a fate you would inflict on someone? Or would you rather that you never have to see them pass but they must deal with your loss in their time?
In the end, death is what gives meaning to our time on earth. That those who come after us, remember our days and what we made of them. They remember how we lived and words we spoke and the acts we performed.
It is, therefore, up to us. Both in how we live through the time that is given us; and in how we remember those who have passed.
All this makes me think – the age old words, “Life is a journey, not a destination” are incredibly apt.