Going to Sleep (Fiction)

I know this is finally it.  All I have to do is close my eyes and go to sleep.  I have known for a long time this day would come, but am I really ready?  All of the pains of the past will be gone, but letting go isn’t easy.

I am laying here all alone at such a big moment.  Shouldn’t someone be here with me?  Has any of the last half century mattered?  Will anyone even notice that I was here and now I am gone? 

What is that butterfly effect thing?  If I travelled back in time and killed a butterfly, it would change the entire course of history, or something like that.  Surely my life has been at least as significant as a butterfly’s, hasn’t it? 

Has it really been a half century?  Not quite, but close.  Saying it that way makes it sound so long.  I don’t feel that old.  How does “that old” feel?

Are these really the things I should be thinking about now, or am I just postponing closing my eyes?  I haven’t always been happy, but I have enjoyed my life.  I am not afraid to close my eyes now.  Stepping into the unknown does bring some trepidation, but no regret for what I am leaving behind. 

There have been plenty of laughs and smiles through the years.  I am sure I brought joy to others.  That should be a good measure for a significant life, shouldn’t it?  Is this what they mean about your life flashing before your eyes?  It’s not really a flash, why did they lie to me? 

There is not much else to do but close my eyes now.  I have done this thousands of times, one more should be easy.  I feel like I should say goodbye to myself, too, before I drift off.  I am not positive that is necessary though.  Maybe it is just the shell that will be gone.  All my thoughts, all my experiences, the essence of who I am are not contained in my shell.  I can shed my body and I am still me.  That essence won’t disappear because the body does, right?

What a tired cliche, but if it’s appropriate this isn’t the time to come up with another one, so it’s back to that butterfly.  Is the butterfly the same creature as the caterpillar, just in a new body?  Is that what happens to us?  Some might agree with that and others would strongly disagree.  That is one advantage of being alone, I guess.  No disagreements.  That is the way it is.  I can close my eyes and even though the body will be gone, the essence will continue. 

That dissolves any reason I may have had to put it off any longer.  Just in case, goodbye me.  We may not have always got along, but we survived a lot and sometimes even thrived. 

There, my eyes are closed and I am drifting off.  Sleep will carry away the old pains.  I am not afraid or sad. 

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