Even death has a heart. ―Markus Zusak
Some people say the thoughts before we die would determine where we go in the afterlife.
The pain of death alone is unmeasurable.
Pain + Remorse = Agony
There are things we wish could be unseen. There are deeds we wish could be undone. Since humans are wired to mess up, the things that we do could never be all pleasant. Some people taste all the bitter parts of life before it gets sweet. Some of the best people choose to be good after all the bullet holes they cannot heal.
We all need each other even if it is hard to admit. The purpose of life is to love and to be loved. But somewhere in the process, somebody inevitably does something that causes scars to someone else’s heart. They say that forgiveness is giving the hate less space in the heart. But “even angels have their wicked schemes”.
When I was five years old, I swore to myself that I was never going to have a boyfriend. When I was seven, I told myself that I was always going to love my best friend. When I was nine, I was the best student in my school and I thought that all rules were meant to be followed. When I was ten, I promised my grandma that I would always share her bed and take care of her.
Guess what? My first best friend forgot me when she turned eight years old, which had led to the first crack in my heart. I started dating when I was fourteen. All the rules and the fixed mindset bought be a ticket to depression land. My grandma left the bed, the shadow of her warmth trailing behind her.
The point is you don’t control most things in life. You don’t control all the terrible stuff that happens to you. You don’t control how people feel, what people face, and how they reflect it back to you. You don’t control the change although your gut cannot catch up. But you can choose how you respond to it.
Grandma died from uterus cancer. To most people, cancer took her life. To me, she beat cancer. I stood there, staring at her lifeless body and wondering what a miracle it was that the universe granted me a chance to be with her. I didn’t cry.
I don’t think grandma remembered that I took care of her during her last moments. I don’t think she would remember anybody being there. However, I was lucky enough to see the way she looked at grandpa when he came to say goodbye. It wasn’t like any Hollywood movies I have seen. No, it wasn’t. It was something out of this world. It was pure love, love, love. It was as if she was communicating with grandpa through her mind, telling him he was worth every particle of her body. She was telling him he was worth dying for; he was worth every second of her beating heart. She was telling him that there exists her universe and it will always be entirely his.
Grandma beat cancer in ways no other humans could. She died three days after her diagnosis. It was a quick one. She didn’t scream. She didn’t even show her pain. She just laid there quietly, letting go. I didn’t cry because I knew she was in pain, but she wasn’t suffering. She had left the bed, but her love will never leave.
Grandma beat cancer because she was never afraid. When I was six, I asked her if she had been afraid of death and she said no. She said if death came tomorrow, she would accept it. I didn’t understand it back then. But I know now that she didn’t beat herself for her mistakes, didn’t dwell on the bad decisions she had made, didn’t bother slapping the hate away.
Grandma had looked death in the eyes and death blinks first. She welcomed the pain, unafraid. She welcomed her sorrow, unregretted. She welcomed her end, fearless. It doesn’t matter if all the bad things were there. She let them be. Because she knew she had given all her love. She knew her heart was free.
© VITAK CHEAV