We are always young when it comes to Death. No matter how many times people tell us that we’re old enough to handle it, that we should stop crying, that we should get used to the idea of people dying, we’re never old enough to comprehend death.
Heavens, I’m not talking about your OWN death. I’m talking about somebody else’s. More specifically, someone you’re close to.
Your best friend, your brother, your mother…maybe the grandmother you weren’t so close to but you liked anyways because she told you stories about the war.
And then death hits you hard. You don’t expect it. You never do. Not when the news that a person is dying comes, not when the news that they’re already dead comes. Never.
It’s silly. When someone asks you ‘Was it sudden?’ I don’t find the right answer to be a simple ‘Yes’ or ‘No’. It’s both. Because it’s always sudden. Even when they’re just slowly withering away before your eyes and then suddenly – poof! – they stop breathing. Even then, it’s sudden. It hits you like a sledgehammer straight to the forehead. It breaks your mind for a few precious seconds and shocks you into reality.
That’s when you realize you could be going any second.
But like I said, this isn’t about your death. It’s about someone else’s. And how we’re never prepared.
Let’s take into account somebody’s hospital death. Imagine yourself going to visit them when they’re still alive and in severe pain at the hospital. They’re weak, too weak to eat drink or even sleep. They just sit there, existing yet not living. You try to speak to them but they don’t answer. But when you say goodbye, suddenly, they brush their hand against yours and say goodbye back. You can barely hear it, but it’s there.
A few days later they die. They die peacefully though, and it’s nothing big. They just stop breathing.
You get the phone call ‘coz you weren’t there when they passed. You take it well, for now. And then somebody calls, and they ask you that inevitable question. ‘How are they?’
And that’s when you break.
Because no matter how many people you’ve had in your life that withered away, it always hurts when you say the words yourself. “They died.” It always hurts, because saying the words just makes it final, makes it real. And that’s when you cry.
You cry because you’ll never see that person again. You cry because you’ll miss them. You cry because that’s what you do when someone dies.
But most of all you cry because you don’t understand. You become a child again and you don’t understand why…
Why do people leave you, even if it is death and it was unintentional?Why did their time have to come?
Why did you never get to say goodbye?
Have you ever been to a funeral and looked around at the people? They’re crying, all of them. Adults, children, teenagers, they don’t hide it. Tears fall freely, they don’t care. They’re in pain, they’re hurt. And every time you look at the coffin, you can’t help but cry too.
No matter how old you are, you’re always too young to fathom Death.