Mama, tell me about death. What is it?

Death, my darling, is what comes at the end of your life.

Why?

Why? Because your body can't function any longer.

Is that what happened to Grandpa?

That's right. But it's okay, because now Grandpa's in a happier place.

Didn't Grandpa like it here with us?

Oh, darling, it's not like that. He had to go, that's all.


Daddy? What does function mean?

Where did you learn that word, sweetheart?

From Mama.

Okay, well, function means purpose, meaning. If something has a function then they have a reason to be.

Oh. Do you have a function, Daddy?

Of course I do, sweetheart. You're my function.

And Mama, too.

Yes, and Mama, too.


At that time, I was only five. I didn't really understand what Daddy and Mama meant when they explained all that to me. What I did get was that death was what happened when your body didn't have a reason to be any more, and they called that 'The End of Your Life'. After death happened to your body, you went to a happier place.

Up until I was nine, I thought that Grandpa had gone to that happier place because Daddy and Mama and I hadn't been his function. I thought for a long time that we hadn't been enough reason for him to stay. I thought that no one had to die if they didn't want to. It caused both relief and pain when I realised that no one had a choice in dying.