Friday, May 15, 2015
A Million Ways to Die
It's 4 am, and this is my second entry for today. Quite a feat, considering I wrote less than 10 entries a year for the past 5 years. You can thank or curse the coffee I had at 9.30 pm last night.
Have you ever thought seriously about how you're gonna go? As in die. I gotta admit, I've never really thought about it seriously until I was 25. If you're an old reader of my blog, then you might know why, and what happened in 2010.
I had my usual paranoia and phobias about death. About dying on the road, or in the shower. But never really gave that much thought to it.
Then people started dying. My friends died from cancer, from sudden heart attacks and through road accidents. And they died young, in their early twenties. When it happened, I was devastated and it affected me deeply, but then life goes on, you know? They went, good for them, because really, they were in a lot of pain and I'd be selfish to want them to stay. I mean, sometimes it feels like this world is a shitty place to live in anyway.
But I still want to live in it. I still want to be a part of this world.
I don't really believe time heals all pain, by the way. I think you just store that pain in a box. You revisit that box sometimes, and when you do, it hurts just as much. I mean, time heals some pain, like pain over break-ups or shit like that. People who are replaceable. But some things, like the death of a family member, or someone really close to you, that pain remains raw. You just don't get over them because they're irreplaceable.
Then I noticed other people dying (wow, great observation there, Magenta). Well, not really friends or people I was close with. Friend of a friend. Friend of a family member. My friends' parents and grandparents. Celebrities I grew up admiring. War casualties. And they all die in various ways.
And I started wondering about what's a good way to go? A sudden death? Terminal illness?
People always say they'd like to die in their sleep. It sounds like a calm, fuss-free death. But would you be okay with dying in your sleep tonight, not knowing that you wouldn't wake up tomorrow? Without saying your goodbyes, your sorries and deleting what needs to be deleted in your computer? Would you be okay dying unprepared?
Or would you like to die after a long, terminal illness? Having had enough time for closure with other human beings. Knowing and accepting that you're surely about to die, having had the time to apologize and say your goodbyes to the people you knew. Having had the time to repent.
How about dying in a gruesome accident? Or being murdered? Imagine all the passersby gawking at your corpse or bits of it, posting it around on social media for others to gawk at it too. Imagine how the newspapers will sensationalize it.
How would you like to go? Would you like to die of old age? When everyone you've loved has passed on before you, and you're just waiting. Imagine being a 90-year-old widow when your husband has passed on at 50. Would you like to go with your mind intact? Would you prefer to have Alzheimer's? With all your limbs still intact?
It doesn't matter what you want, and unless you commit suicide or opt for euthanasia, you don't get to choose the way you go.
Death is inevitable, and there are a million ways to die.