What do you think will happen if you wake up tomorrow to find yourself dead?
Your mom will cry because she cries on all funerals. And weddings and births and family reunions. She will make this about the cycle of life. She will make this about God. She will make this about admonitions and second chances and retribution and what not. She will cry because she told you she would never talk to you after that last fight you had. Her wish came true.
Your dad will cry because a part of his life has gone. The part that fetched him water in the middle of the night and gave him his medicine and straightened his tie on most mornings and laughed too much. He will make this about your achievements which say nothing about the person you were but volumes about the one he expected you to be.
Your older sister, Dee, will cry because that is what’s demanded of her. Somewhere in her mind, she will already be using the hair products you hid from her. She will make this about mustering attention. How all this has traumatized her tremendously and how she needs all the love and support anyone can muster.
Your little sister, Emm, will try to cry but will probably end up not doing it as she’s awkward in these kind of social situations. She’ll condition herself to stretches of silence and mindless gazing in the air because she thinks it’ll give her some depth. There will, however, be more closet space for her and you really must be grateful for what little you have. She might miss you at times because you put up with her. That’s more than most people can say. She’ll make it about the importance of self-sufficiency.
Your brother, Jay, will cry a little because he’s not as much of a man as he thinks he is. Don’t fool yourself: there are no feelings there, just a little fear. He’s still a little afraid of the dark though he doesn’t admit it. There will be a little relief, because he won’t feel outdone now. He’ll make this about facing up to insecurities.
The youngest one, Princess, will cry because she doesn’t know what to do. You were kind to her when you weren’t busy being a grown-up bitch. She’ll make this about understanding a life she will probably never understand.
People will come and cry. They will talk about how you were every parent’s dream. How you were a good person; responsible, thoughtful, beautiful. You would have done great things. Secretly, they will talk of their children’s schools and newly discovered recipes and corrupt politicians and hopeless relatives. They will make this about social networking.
It’s funny how good things are said about you only when you’re not there to hear them. How so few of them are said before people turn to more favoured topics of conversation. And how even though this is your day, they still manage to make it about something else. They still manage to make it about themselves.