I always ask myself this question: What if [a loved one] were to die? How deeply would I grieve?
I know that’s very morbid. (But it’s hardly my most morbid yet.)
I often think about a loved one’s death to gauge exactly how much that person means to me. It could be a family member, a significant other, a close friend. Actually, I also wonder about regular friends periodically, just to see how far up the friendship rung I’ve moved up with them at a given moment.
Sometimes when I’m lying in bed trying to sleep, my mind wanders. I have really bad insomnia so that happens a lot.
I think about a specific person and I picture his (or her) death. I imagine the way I receive the news. I imagine going to the funeral. I imagine living life without him/her. I imagine the little things the person does that makes me laugh or smile. I imagine his/her absence from my life. And I imagine never being able to see this person ever again.
As I visualise each stage, I allow genuine emotions to wash over me, as if the events I’m imagining are really happening. Usually, if the person means a whole lot to me, tears will roll. I will feel the emptiness and the pain of loss. And I will feel the abject fear of losing him/her.
That’s when I know how much the person means to me and I resolve never to take him (or her) for granted, and to treasure each and every moment I have with him/her.
Yes, it’s a very morbid exercise, but I think it helps me appreciate life and especially appreciate the people around me. It keeps me from taking people for granted.
Do you question yourself thus?
You might find yourself surprised by the result.