How old were you when you first learned about death?
May 8, 2010 10:24am CST
I was 7 or 8. The scene was the same: I just arrived from school, my bus stopped in front of our house. The nanny went to me and opened the bus door; the afternoon light was kind. But her face was shadowed with grief. I stepped out, my playmates suddenly approached me: ____, your dog is dead. I do not remember the exact details after, except that I know I persistently asked my nanny for the truth, that I ran towards the house in disbelief. There was a stone in my heart. On the carpet was our dog, my brothers and mother surrounding it with tears. This, was the first time I learned heartbreak. This was the first time that death had a body and a face. This, was the first time I became aware of mortality-- my own, and my loved ones'. And everyone's. At times, I wonder if I have truly gotten over that loss. (In the near future, I will get myself a tattoo, something which will carve out on skin a memento of the loss of this pet). However, I now know that my new-found learning then was something I will never unlearn, and will have to deal with for as long as I live. What's your story?
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