Since I’m home sick today, I’m left alone with my thoughts, which I think I will post here.
I realized some time ago that I don’t fear death. I certainly used to, nearly obsessively, even to the point of fearing sleep because I could die in my sleep and never wake up again. My atheism surely had a hand in this fear; I was terrified of death if it meant that I might entirely cease to exist. I am still an atheist, but I now retain a hope that perhaps something comes after death, and since this decision, my fear of death subsided altogether.
But there’s an aspect of death I simply can’t come to terms with, and that is being forgotten about. That’s right, I don’t fear the pain and uncertainty of death, but the total fall into obscurity after. Sure, you can argue, my family and friends will remember me, but that’s a very small percentage of the population. Who else will know my name? Not a soul. This fear of being forgotten is why I always read the headstones when I pass a graveyard. I read the names of the forgotten and realize that they were once people, too, living normal lives. But who knows them now? No one, not even me, because I know only a name and not a figure to connect it to.
This, I think, is partly why I am so driven, especially in my academics. I want to be on the path to doing to something great. I want to impact as many people’s lives as possible.
I just want to be remembered.