Before I died I was too afraid to live. If I met a guy I liked I would avoid him for fear of him rejecting me. If I wanted a promotion at work I would quietly work harder while hoping my boss would see and promote me but I would never ask in case he refused. If my friends suggested we try something different like camping in the mountains or sky diving I would agree but cancel at the last minute, all because of my fear of the unknown. I could go on forever about all the things I never did and the opportunities I missed, but lets go back to the beginning of this. I died, you didn’t misread that, dead, brown bread, croaked it, passed way, gone to the other side, whatever you want to call it ,except I didn’t slip quietly away to the other side. I’m stayed but nobody could see me and at times it was kind of annoying. I always thought it would be kind of cool to attend my own funeral and hear what other people had to say about me behind my back but with the safe and withdrawn life I lead it probably wouldn’t be.
I guess I should explain how this happened to me. It was the weekend and once again I had agreed to something which I would never go through with. This time my best friend Marcy had invited me to come on a ten mile country walk with her and our other friends Lizzie and Tara on Saturday morning. Friday evening rolled round and I fired off a text message to Marcy.
“Sorry I’m feeling a bit off, don’t think I can make it tomorrow.”
I had the image of an axe wielding madman raging through the countryside as I pressed send.
“No thank you,” I thought to myself, “I am not going to be chopped into tiny pieces and scattered across the countryside where nobody will ever find me.”
It was a matter of seconds before my phone beeped to alert me of Marcy’s reply which read, “not again, Deborah this is getting beyond a joke now.”
I knew this meant she was mad at me just from the name alone. Normally I was Debs or Debbie but for Marcy to call me Deborah was never a good sign.
I panicked at the thought of her phoning me and quickly turned off my phone, I hated confrontation. I didn’t switch on my phone until the next morning. That’s when it happened. While I was pressing “delete all” without reading any of the message my friends had sent me overnight, I failed to notice the shoe at the top of the stairs. I had heard that your life flashes in front of you during these things but mostly if just hurt a lot as my limbs and head bashed against the stairs and the staircase while I tried to catch hold of something that could save me. I guess it must have looked pretty pathetic and my last thought before losing consciousness was that this shouldn’t be happening. I had thought that by leading a safe life, the only things that could ever get me were old age or an incurable and unavoidable illness or disease of some kind. Even then I had spent countless hours calculating the best diet and safest exercise routine to minimize these risks and prolong my life, which I now realise was wasted by my over cautiousness anyway.
As I woke up and saw myself lying there dead I felt cheated. After maybe seeing one two many films or TV shows I decided I could just get back into my body so I laid back down inside my own body. To be honest it was just weird I passed straight through it. I was actually inside myself as I wondered how long I was meant to lie here before my spirit would reconnect with my body.
It wasn’t until sometime later, (I have no idea how long,) when Marcy was calling my name and two paramedics were pronouncing me dead that it dawned on me, this was it now. I was really dead and it’s wasn’t reversible. I had no idea what to do next. You see this in the movies, but you never think it will happen to you and in spite of the countless self help book that are available one has never been written called, “what to do when you’re dead.” This is probably because dead people don’t write books. There’s no real incentive. We don’t need fame, money or success. Those are all things we should have chased in life if we wanted them so badly.
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