By Kyu Kyu Thein
Trigger warning: Death
People always say that when you die, your life flashes right before your eyes in your last moments. So, these are things that I think will happen when the time comes:
When you die, your best friend in first grade walks you home and you two will hold hands. The scrapes on your knees have finally healed and they will help you peel the band-aids off. You talk about the movie you guys watched in class. Your belly is still full of strawberry milk. The candy wrapper in your pocket is bright pink. You throw your head back and laugh loudly. The pigtails on your head bounce as you skip with your best friend, keeping up with a matching rhythm.
When you die, your mom brushes your hair with the red comb that you hate. It will catch onto the knots of your hair and make you wince in pain. The cartoons on the TV attempt to soothe the pain. Your mom has you locked in between her knees as you sit down on the floor. You’re just glad your hair isn’t as long as your mom allows it to be or else it would’ve been worse. After this, your mom will cook you dinner and you decide to finally forgive her.
When you die, your dad sits by your bed and spoon feeds you cough syrup. He has driven to the 24 hour pharmacy an hour away because your cough is only getting worse. He feels your forehead. He pats your head. You will say good night to each other and you will watch him walk out of your room. When he closes the door, you can hear him sigh.
When you die, you are watching your siblings play around with each other in the bedroom that all three of you squeezed into. You will not see anything in the dark but you will hear the breathless laughter. Your mother will knock on your door and all of you will stay quiet and quickly burrow yourselves under the big blanket you share. You will giggle under the covers.You will wish this moment lasts forever.
When you die, your family will surround you on your deathbed. Someone is wiping away their tears and someone else is holding your hand. Someone is calling your family on the other side of the world. Someone will rub your feet. Someone will pull your blanket up. You will be content with going out like this. You have lived a life that no one else will ever live.
You will hear them all laugh as you close your eyes. You will smile with them before you take your last breath.
My mom always told me that when we die, we will be reincarnated into the same family over and over again until we reach Nirvana. Some part of me hopes it’s true. I hope she’s my mom again in my next life. I hope she’ll still brush my hair.