Touching Immortality

When meaning is not as important as the way we look for it.

Marianna Saver
Big Self

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Photo by Keytion on Unsplash

Often, when night comes, I am afraid. A strange, almost agreeable kind of angst. In the vast darkness of the room, right before I slide into sleep, I think about mornings and the faint possibility that I may not get to see the next one.

I am what you would call a young woman, standing at the threshold of my thirties, still pretty at exactly three angles, in good health and similarly good spirits. Or so it seems most of the time. You’d look at my life and think white privilege: bourgeois upbringings, an academic education if I had wanted one, a place of my own in a country I wasn’t born in, a green park nearby, time to waste, someone to get back to at the end of the day. Yet — no matter how hard I try to keep my mind elsewhere — most nights, I am completely absorbed, almost consumed by a mild, relentless fear of death.

These nocturnal meditations started long before news of a deadly virus began circulating and became increasingly more urgent when the plague brought mass death to the world, introducing a novel meaning of human existence. Once, they kept me awake for a full month, which is to say that for thirty days in a row I had not slept, but instead occupied myself with ruminations about death, its mystery or lack thereof, imagining possible scenarios where…

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Marianna Saver
Big Self

I write to understand what I don’t know. I also send monthly love notes: bit.ly/themorningair