The first time I died knowingly, I was seven years old. I was sitting in my room, in my hideaway, with the back against the cold radiator, my usual place. The others were playing in the garden. It was summer. And it was hot out there. My back was leaning against the cool radiator. And I pretended to read. The book in my hands protected me from being abruptly disturbed in my daydream.
Now that I think about it, it probably was not my first death. However, it is the first one I remember.
How I died that day is lacking in the memory. That I was dead is clearly traceable.
I can still see my grave. I can see people weeping. I can hear voices. And I can still understand what they are saying.
I can even see myself. Me, standing at the grave with all those others. I am wearing a white robe. I am standing next to the others. I am calling out, look at me, I am still here. I am not dead. Only a part of me has died. See me, I am yelling. See me!
I was crying. About me. Because of the far too short life of a wonderfully talented and joyful being. A daughter, a sister, a friend. About the spirit of a dead child who was still alive and yet remained unnoticed.
At one point, my mother called for dinner.
By the time I realized she had really called and ran downstairs to join the others after drying my tears, they were already in the middle of eating dessert. As often, I had missed a meal.
My tear-stained face caught their attention, however, as usual, it was assumed that I was probably in the middle of reading a sad book again.
To me, it was surreal. Having just died, buried, unrecognized by the others in my white robe at my own funeral, and now in a pair of bathing suits sitting at a table with some of them, with a cold bratwurst and potato salad on my plate, while my three siblings were munching away an ice cream with hot raspberries with their sandy fingers, and red juice of raspberries running down their bare bellies. Shortly, we would all be getting to jump into the bathtub. All four of us into the same bathwater.
Oh great. Yacky.
I just died, you guys, I thought quietly. And now I am here again. And you have no…