Death has a way of stealing people’s futures. Anyone who has lost a loved one be it a parent, a sibling, a child, or some other close family member or friend knows just how hard death hits. They spend their days wondering what could have been if only that person got to live. What their future would have been like. What kind of adult they would have become. What kind of spouse or parent they would have become. What they would have decided to name their children. What their children would have looked like and been like.
For parents who lose a child during pregnancy, many don’t even know the baby’s actual gender so they can never fully even embrace a name for them. Was their lost baby a boy or a girl? Would they have worn pink or blue clothes? Would they be the star athlete at school? Would they have pursued dance or theater? Would their singing voice have been so beautiful that it would have made people cry? Would they have been.
Would they have become famous one day? Would they have changed their world with their inventions or mind? Would they have saved lives as a doctor? Would they have found the cure for Cancer? Would they have lived to be a hundred with grandchildren and perhaps even great-grandchildren? There are so many questions that will never be answered. At least not in this lifetime and maybe not even for those who believe in religion in the ‘next.’
Anyone who has lost a beloved friend or relative knows that emptiness in the pit of their stomach. That void that person and only that person could ever fill. It was their voice, and their laughter, their rosy cheeks, or sense of humor. It was their smell when they walked into a room. It was their hugs and kisses. It was their wisdom and their sense of purpose. It was everything about them from head to toe that brought joy into a person’s life. Now their room is missing them. Now their family is missing them. Now their school is missing them. Now their grandkids are missing them. Now their favorite neighbor down the block is missing them. Now nothing is the same and nothing will ever be the same since the day that they left this world and all of it suddenly changed.
Maybe you think you see them walking down the side of the road on the way home with lunch for your family. Perhaps you think you smell their cologne, or perfume, or tobacco as you walk down the street. It smells familiar. It smells like them. It smells like the home you once had with them in it. Perhaps you feel a soft breeze and feel like they entered the room once again. Once again they sat down beside you or laid down in your bed. That bed that you shared with them and did your private life that only they got to be involved with. It’s like a secret that only the two of you ever knew and shared with one another.
What could have been will drive a person insane if they let it. What could have been will deteriorate a person’s quality of life if they let it. What could have been will make a person lose sleep and tears. What could have been will linger in the minds and hearts. What could have been will never be resolved, at least not right now. Oh, what could have been…
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© Kristalin Davis and Kristalin Davis’ Musings on the Human Condition, 2017.