I woke up with a start. It was a normal night. It was so silent I could actually hear my own heartbeat. And it was beating rapidly. I had a nightmare, one of the worst till now. I couldn’t sleep after that. To be honest, it was not any ordinary nightmare that I could have brushed off once I woke up. This nightmare showed me the answer to the question I was trying to avoid. As long as I can. I could avoid this question for eternity if I can. The question itself was a nightmare to me. But what I saw in the dream was the answer to the question. The inevitable answer to the question.
Who would mourn you if you died?
“I was going through life as a dead fish goes through water. Wherever it takes”
The answer was too scary. Too scary to even imagine I would think of something as such. With the thought in my mind, I started organizing my life. It was as random as it can be. As thoughtless and as carefree it could be. There was nothing I could call as a strength. Nor there was something I can say as my passion. I was going through life as a dead fish goes through water. Wherever it takes.
If you don’t have the answer to the question “Where do you want to go”, there is no point in asking “Where does this road take me”
It reminded me of a story. A man was working when a traveler asked him, pointing to a road, “Where does this road take me?”. The man replied, “Where do you want to go?”
If you don’t have the answer to the question “Where do you want to go”, there is no point in asking “Where does this road take me”. I was in the same state. I had no idea what I wanted, and I was there, trying to go somewhere.
With the thoughts, I couldn’t sleep anymore. After the sun rose, and I still couldn’t sleep, I went to the office, hoping I could get as tired as I can, to get some good enough sleep. As I was working my way through the number of things in my task list, she saw me. Although most of my friends and colleagues recognized the sleepy face of mine, which is not a common occurrence, I brushed it off as a small thing. They were polite and didn’t bother me more than I needed to. But she saw it. Through the veil of lies, she saw the truth. There was something bothering me. And she asked me.
“What is bothering you?” she asked me.
“Nothing, I’m fine. I’m fiiinee” I replied. I should not have done that. I thought at the back of my mind.
“Nothing is fine when you say fiiinee” she replied. “Now tell me what is bothering you?” she asked again.
“Nothing” I replied. I was not going to share what was troubling me to her.
“Wanna go for a coffee?” she asked.
“You’re not going to get anything from me” I replied.
“I’m not asking for anything. I’m asking for a coffee. You’ve been working for a while now, you need some break. Let’s have a break” she replied as she started walking towards the pantry for a coffee. I followed her, as I too needed some break.
“So, tell me. What’s up?” she asked, as we settled down on the chairs with a freshly ground coffee in our hands.
“I had a nightmare” I said. I didn’t want to give in to the temptation of being a mystery to others and being a misery to myself, but there was something in me that said that I could tell her and that I needed to tell her everything immediately.
“Wow, so it’s a coffee that gets you out, huh?” she said.
“It’s not a coffee. I just feel that I can share stuff with you. You are trust-worthy” I said.
“If you’re looking for a date with me, that is just about the way you go about it” she replied.
“Yeah. I’ll take that offer. Sometime probably, but not now” I said. “But let me tell you about this nightmare” I added.
“Yeah, go ahead. I am dying to know what is bothering you” she replied.
Her voice sounded with genuine concern, although I was thinking that she might be flirting with me.
“Did you ever have this question? Who would mourn you if you died?” I asked her.
“I usually try not to think about things like death. But yeah, a long time ago I had a question like that. Didn’t like the answer much, so didn’t bother too much” she replied. The coolness in her saying those words made me shiver. She didn’t like the answer, so she didn’t bother? I thought.
“Well, I tried to avoid the question as much as I can. But last night, I had a dream where I saw the answer to that question. I woke up with a start and couldn’t sleep since” I replied. “It was a normal day as ever. Nothing special about the day. And there I was in my home, dead. Nothing was happening. Nobody was even bothering to check up on me. I was lying there for the entire day, no one came. And that moment, I understood what I was trying to avoid all these days. I couldn’t make a goddamn difference in anyone’s lives for myself to matter” I said. “I couldn’t make a goddamn difference” I was about to slam the table, but tried to control myself as I was in the office.
“I will” she replied.
“What you will?” I asked her in confusion.
“I will mourn you if you died” she replied.
Never did I think two words could make all the difference in the world.