Another Evidence of What Is Lost

How much more can others lose before I am the one that is lost?

You know how it is that you think the worst has already happened to you? Then, life says just hold my beer. You just know that you are about to see another shade of the worst version of your life’s story.

I thought I had known the worst pain in the world until late last night. My phone chimed at 21:12. I got a text message as I was just returning from my usual night stroll, it distracted me from the oncoming car, so I was startled when I heard the screeching sound from a car tire. Who travels in the dark anyways?

The neighborhood as usual was pitch black save for the dim light from the tired moon and lazy stars hanging around the sky. Our street light had stopped working since forever even though everytime election period drew near, they would come around and promise to fix it in exchange for votes. It never comes on top of their priority list, their excuse is that there are hardly any car that pass through this route. 

Apparently it was a blue moon yesterday, since I was seeing a car in this part of the town. Even a Mercedes at that, although in ruin. I was quite interested, so I moved closer to see the scene. I was not in a hurry to return home, I had all the time.

It had rained earlier when I took a long walk in the rain to hide my tears and shattering heart. Even though I hated the rain, I was giving it a chance to prove for once that someone or maybe something can be on my side but rather it held a surprise for me; a huge one at that.

I had no fears of getting a cold but I felt a concern about anyone that was considered sane who would be driving in such terrible weather. For the first time that night, I felt relief, I felt like maybe I was not the only one dealing with the shit life keeps throwing, I moved towards the car to discover a better story. My misery deeply needed company and it felt like it was close by.

Adrenaline was starting to course in my vein when I glanced at the car by the side of the road, it was now upside down with broken glasses lying all around. I immediately dialed 911 in hope that I would get an answer but it went straight to voicemail. Even though I doubt it even exists in this country. I moved closer to see the person or the people in the car. It was a man alone there. He looked unconscious.

‘Mr. Man, Can you hear me?’ I shouted while also shaking him. Surprisingly, he turned around. The seatbelt was holding his neck and his face was well bloodied. He could pass for Lucifer at that moment, or the monster I imagined when I was much younger.

I tried opening the door and getting him out of the damaged car, despite his weight I was able to drag him outside. Placing him on the bare road, I didn’t know what else to do, I just sat by his side. I feared he could die any moment before any help could come.

I told him that I didn’t know what to do for him and guess what he did next? He laughed. He laughed in my face and said, “It is enough miracle that you found me and I get to share my last moment with someone. I thought I was going to die cold and alone”.

Why are you having a positive thought about a tragic moment such as this? How? My thoughts were messed up but I sat still with him. At least, my presence meant something to him.

‘Tell me your story. Why are you out here alone in the cold. I know you didn’t expect to see me.’

To answer him or not? I decided. There’s no harm in talking to someone. So I started.

My parents got into a huge fight, probably the last one before the talk of divorce finally hits the table. I’m the only child of a dysfunctional home, a survivor of a series of unfortunate events. If you think I survived.

When I was 8, I survived a plane crash in which all my cousins died. It was supposed to be a children’s camp and a bonding session for my cousins and I. Our parents were invested in our relationship and collectively paid to get us all out of the country for exposure and orientation coupled with fun. The tragic event created a feud between my parents and their siblings. They could not handle their grief. The pain of losing their children could not hold them together because they felt my parents could not relate, I was labeled a bad omen. My uncles and aunts hold my existence against my parents claiming my witchcraft killed their children. 

When I was 10, our house got burned down. It was a small accident that occurred in the kitchen. I wanted to surprise my parents by preparing pasta for them. For reasons I still don’t know, the gas cooker exploded and brought down the whole house without leaving a scratch on me. I sat down on the lawn in front of the house crying till my parents came back to see their loss. I saw it in their eye that night that they wished I had died in the fire accident. They couldn’t bear to kill me yet keeping me was at a great cost to them.

Many nights I cried myself to sleep but no one heard or probably no one cared enough about how I felt. How miserable it was for me to be the sign of a bad omen. My family hated me and the last argument my parents had was on deciding whether to throw me out of the house or keep me till I clocked 18. My father wanted nothing to do with me anymore while my mother could not bear the guilt of actually throwing me out since her eyes often tell me that she’s on the same page with my father. 

Yesterday, I got my drivers license and I wanted to celebrate by driving my dad’s car through town. One thing led to another, there was an accident. I was left unscathed but the car didn’t have the same story, it was totally condemned. I still don’t understand how that happened but it happened and I am here still alive.

Ideally, I know I should feel lucky but luck shouldn’t feel like this. I should be glad to be alive but I’m just a reminder of everything that could go wrong. There has been nothing good that anyone could attach to my presence. I’m just an evidence of everything they’ve lost.’

I was lost in my rant and I didn’t notice that the young man beside me had slept. He looked so much at peace and for a moment I envied him. I wanted his peace so much, so I shook him. Mr Man, wake up jo. Did you even hear everything I said?

’Reeeeelax, just be calm. I heard you. I just want you to know that… ‘ he said and started coughing.

Now you’re the one to calm down. I don’t even have water for you. Calm down now.

And then, he took his last breath.

I couldn’t look away for the longest time. I heaved and gathered myself, I stood up and left his side. Another evidence of what is lost. I didn’t even get to know his name.

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