Writing Challenge Day 1 - ‘Beginning’
In the beginning, I remember there was fear - a deep fear that poured through my veins like ice water, spreading from this incomprehensible notion of eternity. Eternity. The word always sounded so vast in my mind. It was never the concept of dying that terrified me to the core; rather, it was the idea of being reborn into an endless pool of time, spread out before me like a black sea in which I would be left to tread water until the end of time.
I didn’t want that, you see. I didn’t want the endlessness, the vastness of the universe and all of time. To me it felt like eternal stagnancy, and for reasons that even I never understood the thought smothered me in weariness.
It’s not that I wished for everything to end. I couldn’t quite imagine what it would be to simply cease existence either. But… Perhaps I wanted the promise of change. Of a way out, or many. Doors leading to innumerable worlds of possibility. That was why Heaven never appealed to me, and the idea of a Hell was so repugnant that I could not imagine sending the worst men of all time there – not forever.
But those thoughts were born of youth and curiosity. I’m not scared anymore, you see. I have traveled this world and the secret pockets of beauty it possesses for well beyond my time. I have seen countries rise and fall, the wonder of both life and death, and the strength of a people fighting to be free. I have seen the lights that spread across the northern skies like dancing spirits, forests tall enough that one cannot discern where the canopy ends and the sky begins, and mountains older than time shrouded in equal parts mist and mystery. I have come to realize that I have seen enough, for this lifetime.
So if you are reading this – whether you be one of my age, or a young life still radiating with possibilities and doors that have yet to be opened, know that I did not fear death when it came to collect me. I have learned enough of this world, and I can feel the stagnancy that I have run from for so long settling into my bones. Whatever the darkness that calls for me now holds, I will welcome it. Darkness is not innately bad you see, for it holds with it the promise of rest, and the promise that the light, when it comes, will be all the more brilliant.
In my final moments I remember the fear of my first, not because it defines who I am now, but because it defines who I was. A youth who never stopped running. A woman who took one look at the life presented to me – normalcy, routine, fading into the crowd – and ran for all that she was worth. And I’m here to tell you, whoever may hear my words, that until this moment when I will finally lay myself down to rest and await a new beginning, I never stopped running.
And you know what child? It was the best decision of my life.