‘If I were to ask why you did it, asked you if you could explain any possible reasoning you may have had behind the actions you took that day and how you came to your decision; would you be able to do it?’
If there was silence, it was only an absence of sound. The question absorbed, was let fully form before being re-animated in a response. It was analysed with deliberation, held closely and looked upon, admired with clear intent. Yes. The answer had already been born. It had been carefully thought through, de-constructed and rebuilt again into another faultless mechanism of understanding. Yet whilst it still functioned silently, effortlessly keeping close time and asked for no movement or attention, it had become an entirely different machine:
That day, that moment; all I can say of it is that I chose to give up my life.
Had it been under any other circumstances, they probably would have called it suicide. But instead, they call me a ‘hero’. All I can tell you is that it is different now. Somehow I feel smaller yet with endless reach, fragile but limitless, insignificant yet infinite; I feel like I have given everything I possibly could. And now I have nothing left. I am still alive, though alive not through my self but suspended by the unbreakable ties of every person I have ever loved, the people who have heard my words, held me close, invited me into their lives, spoken my name and held me in their thoughts. I no longer exist in my self; I never did. It is only by those people who I chose to die for that I did, and will continue to, exist.
And that’s why I did it: why I chose to do it. It wasn’t spur of the moment, an immediate chance reaction, a ‘hero’s reflex’; I had thought about it. I realised. I looked around and I saw the faces, saw them all and thought deeply about what everything in its near unfathomable culmination meant to me – and then I thought about my self. And I realised that I had had everything a single person’s life could ever hope to receive. If I had died, no person should have reason to mourn this life – because it had never been truly mine. I who am nothing but a tie of connections manifest in a living being, the combined effort of everyone and everything I have ever met or know. All that I have ever experienced – joy, happiness, sadness, pain, tenderness, caring, and all other inexplicable emotions for which words are only an impermanent symbol – everything I have loved and could ever hope to love existed solely in these lives before me.
If they had asked me to take my own life to save them, I would have done. And my only regret would be that I would no longer be there to do it again.
~ Christo Tekna