I’ll never forget the way the light faded from her eyes; the way her breathing gradually slowed until it stopped altogether. And even though I’d known my aunt had been sick for a long time, it was still a shock being there that night when she finally passed away. It was a relief to know that she was no longer hurting but it was hard too- it still is- to adjust to life without her. To realise she’s gone.
When I was in school, I studied the poem “For Adrian” by Derek Walcott. To be honest, I didn’t fully appreciate it back then, but now I see it in a whole new light. The poem is written from the point of view of a recently deceased child, Adrian. Adrian sees his family weeping and mourning his loss, but is puzzled by it. What his family doesn’t realise is that he has “entered a wisdom, not a silence”. He is not suffering now and he does not want his family to be in pain because of his passing: “I would not break your heart, and you should know it; I would not make you suffer, and you should know it; and I am not suffering, but it is hard to know it.”
Losing a loved one is never easy, but like Walcott, I don’t believe that this is the end. I believe my aunt has gone to a better place- a place where she isn’t in pain anymore. A place where she can be reunited with her brother and her parents. And even though it’s hard for those left behind, I believe that this wisdom is one “which you will share with me and see that it is true” (Walcott).
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