‘In this world nothing is certain but death and taxes.’, Benjamin Franklin (1706-90) in a letter to Jean-Baptiste Leroy, 1789
How very true, and eloquently put. There is nothing we are more certain to do in life than die.
I commented last week on the death of my cousinâ€™s baby boy. The funeral is on Wednesday but I won’t be attending. Last year I went to my Grandmother’s funeral and at 80 plus years old it was still a tough thing to have to go through. Seeing the anguish of people you care about and knowing there is nothing you can do to alleviate their pain â€“ that words are merely hollow offering of little worth â€“ is a shitty situation to be in. So I wonâ€™t be attending. It would just be too much to have to go through. How can we comfort a mother who has lost her baby? Itâ€™s an impossible task and one I want no part in.
It seems like death is a prevalent subject at the moment. My mother called today to tell me something and ask me something; to tell me that they were seeing someone tonight about making a will and to ask if I would act as executor if the worst happened. It isnâ€™t something we like to consider, the loss of our parents, but it is something we all understand will likely happen and, even if we choose to put those thoughts to the back of our heads and file under â€™I donâ€™t want to talk about thisâ€™, we know that one day, some day, we will have to face the fact that our parents will die. My mother asked me what would happen to the children, to my younger brothers in the event of their deaths. Would I take them on? Would I care for them? Of course I would. I explained that I would consider it my duty as eldest sibling to raise the boys to the best of my ability if those unfortunate circumstances arose. My mother asked what would happen if the woman I was with refused to take them on. I explained that if my girlfriend/wife was not prepared to accept the children that I would not be prepared to accept her. That if they were not welcome she would not be welcome. I imagine a parentâ€™s first worry in the event of their death would be what would happen to the children. I was happy to put her mind at rest.
Pretty morbid, huh?
And on that note Iâ€™ll retire to bed. I donâ€™t fancy another day like today (yesterday, he remarks, checking the time) tomorrow, or today, if you know what I mean. Fuck it. Iâ€™m confusing myself.