I saw this question on Quora, and bookmarked it. I thought someday I would give an answer to it. It’s been on my list of questions to answer for about two months now. Everyday I look at it. Think small about it then move on to read other people’s response. I haven’t been able to think clearly the things I would do if all I have was today.
What would you have done differently if you knew that you only have today to live? That is another way to ask the question. It’s a question I find very scary to answer. Not as though I believe life owes me immortality, No! Truly I believe all I have is today and nothing else matters.
Somewhere in 2011, I was standing by the road side waiting for traffic to halt so I could cross the road to the other side. From nowhere, I heard this loud sound, boom!
The next scene I saw was a gentle man in his mid thirties lying lifeless on the ground in a pool of blood; he’d been knocked down by a speeding vehicle! As the horror of the scene kept flashing my busy mind, questions triggered; “Did he ever think that today could be all that he had”? “If he knew, would he have lived life differently than he did?” Would he have regrets for a life not well lived?”
Today I’m faced with these same questions. I’m faced with questions I should have had answers long ago. I haven’t answered. Trying to make all the life in me fit into only a day is some sort of hard thing to do.
I was intrigued by the answers people have given on Quora. Some are fun. Some comes from deep within the heart. Some seemed to have been scripted by people who believe actually, all they have was today.
One writer said; I would call and say thanks to all the people that helped me. Then say sorry to all that I ever hurt. I would tell my kids sweet dreams, mum is going and would forever be in their heart.
Another wrote; I would call my best friend and say how glad I was to have known them. Then I will call all my university research project team members and give them a piece of my mind for all the let down they caused me in school.
Someone also wrote; “All I will ever have is gratitude. And thank life for the opportunity to live. I will pray to whatever god there is and ask for forgiveness. Then I’ll accept the inevitability of death.”
All these answers felt like they were coming from deep within me. I had a reason to believe I would have done same things that these writers were saying they’ll do. Maybe. Maybe not. There was something missing. Something to make these answers real to my way of thinking.
Then came this woman who answered the question this way; “I would have the wildest sex I could possibly have and hope the orgasm comes at the very moment of my demise. Then I would know I left with a bang!”
Now wait, wait right here. Let me ask you this; wouldn’t you love to go same way as this woman? Hell I would love to! Then my epitaph will read; “He died doing what he loved to do best. He left fulfilled”
You see, going through all the answers to the question, there was one thing apparent—Everyone wanted the last day of their lives to be the best day they’ve ever lived. They wanted to do all the things that would make them happy. They wanted to say all the right things to people they cared about. They wanted to be remembered as people who lived—Who made difference in other people’s lives.
They wanted to hit the right note on the very day that life, that life will depart from their bodies. They wanted to live it all in the day that life was suppose to leave them.
The question then is; what prevents us to live each day as the way we would if we knew tomorrow wouldn’t find us alive? Do we need permission to do so?
If you are grateful for having someone in your life, make it clear to them everyday. say it to them. Live in a way that will make the person see you’re grateful for their presence. Like a prayer that is said every now and then, let people see how important they are to you through your daily actions.
Call your friends. Call your parent. Let your love ones know you are here. When you are gone, they the ones who will wash your memories clean with their tears. They are the ones who will let the world know the kind of person you are; They’ll be the ones to sell your stories.
Don’t miss them when you can call everyday to say hello. Why wait till you knew the last day of your life before you live the life you’d always wanted to live?
We are the unlucky ones. We were blessed with lots of knowledge less one thing. We are the species that have conquered the earth. We are the souls that have been able to bend the universe to our will. We are the winners. Unfortunately, we were not made to count the number of our days. The day to take the final bow is so far hidden from all the places we’ve searched for answers.
As I sit here and stare at this blinking cursor, I know every single blink takes away a second from the life I have left. So I pretend my heart is a violin. A violin that wants to play a melody to everyone I meet down the stairs or up there about.
Maybe it’s not my turn yet. Just maybe it’s your turn. If it is, then you deserve to go with a piece of my melody. Come let’s sing; “Hello tomorrow, If I don’t make it alive today, know that all I ever wanted was to be happy.”