It’s the eve of my birthday. I was just 6 months old when I was born. Had I been born normally, my birthday would be on November instead of August. I wouldn’t have been Leo. Maybe I wouldn’t have that lion pride in me. Maybe I wouldn’t have been Marvin. Maybe…
Like everyone says, no one asked to be born. Yet, if choosing between existing and not existing is really possible, I’m not really sure if I’d have the balls to say “yes” to living. If an angel gave me a tour of the world, I don’t think I would come out of it looking too impressed.
Poverty, diseases, greed, hypocrisy, violence, alienation, heartaches — the pains of living had often made me wonder whether existing as an immovable, numb rock is so much better.
But here’s the advantage of living: that you’re always forced to live no matter what you think of life. Since no one weighed in on anything prior to being born, all of us are made to deal with what we have. It’s like someone forced you to bungee jump and you’re left alone to deal with the experience. And “experience” is what gods deny immovable, numb rocks.
Despite all the pain though, life for me, is still worth living. I was once asked in an org interview at the university what my reason for living was. My answer was that I still derived pleasure from living. I said that if there comes a point when I can’t derive any more pleasure from life, then it’s reasonable by then to be done with life.
Nietzsche once said that people shouldn’t die weak and defeated by sickness. They should leave life when they’re still healthy, able to arrange their will with their relatives and loved ones, able to deeply reflect on their lives and what became of them. That way, you’re giving honor to life and not just prolonging your existence just because you’re too scared of dying. He had contempt for people who barely hang on to life, burdening others with their dying presence.
Well, Nietzsche was one merciless maniac. We all know that.
Still, I kinda agree with him. I won’t discuss all my thoughts on suicide because it’s not exactly a suitable topic on the eve of one’s birthday, but I’d have to acknowledge my admiration for Nietzsche’s love of life.
To me, Nietzsche knew that to love life is to be thankful for it. Like what I told my orgmates back then, I could only live because life is still pleasurable. When life ceases to bring me any happy reason for existing, when I can find no reason to be thankful for it, then the least I can do to honor life would be to end my life altogether willingly.
But I feel great because these days, at every turn at every corner, life is showing me every reason to be grateful. I don’t even need god to tell me life is beautiful because it is stunning, awe-inspiring, dazzling, at least today.
And so these are my feelings going into my 24th birthday. It’s not easy to be me but I have in my head a good list of reasons why someone else would pay just to be me right now.