Life is a hoax. Now we are here and the next minute we are gone.
All could have ended for me some minutes ago. My younger sister had forgotten to put off the hot plate after she finished cooking, and my youngest sister –in her ignorance- had placed my elder sister’s phone that was charging on the hot plate. The phone was already melting and she was close to the place, ironing and completely oblivious of the smoke. I caught a glimpse of the smoke on my way to the bathroom and traced it to the burning phone.
I was able to avert the damage before it was done. Thank Goodness!
As I showered, thoughts started running through my mind. So many rhetorics of ‘ifs’. What if I hadn’t noticed the smoke? What if I had noticed and ignored it? What if the phone had exploded? We would all be found, mother and all four children, burnt beyond recognition except for sizes.
I imagined the after events of these possibilities; the headlines in the news the day after, the weeping, the pain, and talks of ‘I still saw him yesterday’, ‘We just spoke on the phone a while ago’.
I imagined my photos on people’s post with sweet sour captions. I pictured my smiles in the photos making people cry.
The dreams and aspirations that would evaporate in the smokes. Memories that’ll cause pain. Lives yet to be touched that would remain untouched. The speech that will never be given.
The love that’ll never be shared. The husband and father that will never be, and the generation that’ll never exist. I will be missed and after a while, become a faint memory.
All because of one careless error.
My case was not so peculiar. I’ve seen lives ended in an instant because of negligence and carelessness; a driver texting while driving, a drunk driver, a contractor consumed with excess gain that he used substandard materials for a building, a doctor having a bad day and performing surgery, an injection mismatch, a wrong drug labelling, gas cooker left on, a gun misfire, the list is endless.
An acquaintance of mine killed four people while learning to drive. I can’t even imagine the pain and anguish the family of the victims went through just because of a silly mistake.
All these accidents have a ripple effect beyond our imagination. I’ll conclude that we are all accidents waiting to happen, none of us knows when it’ll be our turn or what manner it will come.
We all move through life with uncertainties yet we pursue dreams we may not actualize. We harm ourselves in various ways and take up opportunities we shouldn’t in a bid to live a good life and leave a legacy. And in the end, what do we get?
We all move through life with uncertainties yet we pursue dreams we may not actualize.
I happened to be at the funeral of a neighbour at the cemetery and a tombstone caught my attention. The occupant of the grave had been an academic while he was alive. He had acquired degrees in the various academic discipline he ventured, all of them running into three lines and more on the tombstone. What a learned man.
He died at 35.
Then and there I thought, what is the essence of life if we’ll eventually die?