Death Day Blog #1794567
by K.D. Robertson
Day 1 After My Seventeenth Birthday, Post 1
Fuck Leto. Absolutely fuck her.
What gave her the right to do this to us? I want to live in the time before. Before we had to know.
I could tell growing up the ones who were destined to die earlier, we’re more reckless, quicker to say yes to skydiving, terrified of our fast-approaching end. We’re driven by a need to experience everything before we’re gone and cursed with the knowledge that we won’t.
Leto blessed us, my mother reminded me on the morning after my seventeenth birthday. After our extended family arrived and I was told I had grown so much since last time they saw me, my mother gave her usual speech:
Leto, that Great Goddess of Motherhood, bestowed upon the mortals the ability to know the exact moment of their deaths. Myth says Leto never wanted a mother to have a child taken without prior knowledge. Death should not be a shock, and our ticking clocks force us to appreciate the time we have. Mothers – We, she said. We. She would not look at me, and I would not stop looking at her. We know when our children will be taken so we can celebrate every moment.
We ate and drank to honor the sleeping god because history says Leto was kind and generous and loving and we should be grateful for this gift. Bullshit.
My aunts and uncles and cousins did not know that I am going to die soon because my mother said there is no need to tell anyone yet. There is no need to tell anyone yet. There is no need to tell anyone yet. When will you tell them, mother? After Moirai, the Fates, snip my thread?
Leto cursed mothers and children with the burden of a dark and severing knowledge – time – and my mother and I have known since the day I was born when I would die.
After dinner, I told everyone because they need to know. My mother began to mourn me the moment my umbilical cord was snipped, should everyone else not also have that right? To mourn me?
I don’t know how it will happen, Leto wasn’t kind enough to make me privy to that information, but I know when. The exact fucking second when my clock will run out.
The exact second.
Day of My Seventeenth Birthday, Post 2
I know a blog about the end of my life is pretty fucking cliché, but it’s what I’ve got left. It’s the only think that’s going to keep me from falling into a pit of existentialist despair by staying holed up in my room until death. My aunt Adara did this and Zarak from next door and George the accountant and his wife and Dimitris and Beatrice and Nikos and Tal and – and you get the point. A lot of people can’t handle the thought of not existing. I mean, most people can’t. It goes against our fundamental hardwiring as human beings – living is basically all we have. Life is all we really know. Death is a vast guessing game.
As one of my peers who is destined to die sooner, and the first in my immediate family (yes, the first – all of my grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, siblings, etc. are going to live full lives), I know it would be easier for me to fade into the background. If I start wearing all neutral tones and stop raising my hand in class, then this would all be a lot easier for everybody. Most kids who die around my age drop out of school a year before their clock stops, but I want to stay. I want people to remember me, and I refuse to fade.
I want my death to be in a blaze of glory. People will remember me. They will cry about me. I will not bow my head and accept my fate to be a distant memory.
Day 1 of My Seventeenth Birthday, Post 3
Before I actually start documenting my final days, I want you to know I’m not suicidal – I’ve tried to be, but the attempts never seem to stick. I don’t know why I expected them to.
Fate cannot be altered by our own hands. My death probably won’t be blowing myself up in the school basement, but I’ll be damned if people don’t remember me. I might be damned anyway.
Day 1 After My Seventeenth Birthday, Post 4
I’ve decided I’m not going to tell you when I’m going to die because I hate to be the one to spoil the ending for you. I like the idea that you, you 22 that have discovered this gods-forsaken blog, will be rooted in suspense. I want you to be cheering for me. Maybe she’ll be different. I won’t be, but at night I still whisper into the void the gods left and ask them why.
Day 3 After My Seventeenth Birthday, Post 4
I’m eating Choco-Brownie Extreme ice cream and contemplating why I wasn’t chosen to live out my reality show fantasy on the next season of The Young and the Dying. I’m their perfect candidate: young and dying. Alas, they passed over me. So, I’m looking to you to give me my last bit of recognition, maybe some fame before my final moments. I promise I’ll be honest, unfiltered.
After I finish my ice cream, I think I’m going to get another tattoo– artist’s choice. But it has to go on my ass. Maybe I’ll get my nipples pierced too.
Day 3 After My Seventeenth Birthday, Post 5
Update: There’s puss exuding from my nipples now. I think there’s a peach on my ass, and I feel that’s not very creative.
Day 4 After My Seventeenth Birthday, Post 6
Well, hello new subscribers. Did the pics of my new tat and piercings bring you?
Day 5 After My Seventeenth Birthday, Post 7
At school today, Jacob B. – who, fun biographical fact, was my first kiss – got into another fight. The rumor this time is that he slept with Heather’s partner. I think Jacob just likes the drama. I certainly do. So, after school today, I kissed Heather’s partner. I think Heather may need to reconsider her partner’s loyalty.
Day 5 After My Seventeenth Birthday, Post 8
I’m working on homework from our unit on logarithmic functions in Advanced Calc today, and I’m thinking about the time my family toured Athena’s University as my brother was looking at colleges. I was twelve, but the admissions people gave me a sticker and told me it was never too early to start looking. My mother thanked them with a bright smile. It was the first time I remember being distinctly aware that I would not make it to college.
I dream myself into being a teacher.
Day 8 After My Seventeenth Birthday, Post 15
I’m tagging along with my mom and sisters to pick out new paint for my sister’s room. My grandparents offered to redo it for her sixteenth birthday. The cashier’s hot, and I’m thinking about giving them my phone number.
Day 9 After My Seventeenth Birthday, Post 17
Heather finally confronted me. I was almost a little insulted it took that long for her partner to tell her about the kiss. I’m a damn good kisser. She slapped me while I was standing in line to buy a chocolate bar from the old vending machine next to the gym. There wasn’t really anyone around, which was disappointing. But she did invoke the wrath of Nemesis, the goddess who enacts retribution against those who succumb to hubris, upon my soul. I told her the choice to invoke Nemesis was clever but reminded her that the gods are quiet.
Day 9 After My Seventeenth Birthday, Post 19
I met with the cashier from the hardware store where we got paint samples. We went and got a coffee this morning, and they made fun of me for ordering a hot chocolate. Asshole.
Day 11 After My Seventeenth Birthday, Post 22
I want to be one of those poets of old like Sappho or be able to invoke the Muses or be a Muse so I can make you feel what I felt last night. I want to be able to describe how the crowd pulsed in time with the music, how the air was sweet with sweat and ambrosia, how the baseline vibrated my soul. I want to tell you these things. I want you to experience the brush of strangers lost in the melodies. I want you to know what it was like when the crowd went silent at the singer’s command. I want to know what that power feels like.
I could hear the shaky breath of those around me, my own chest rising and falling at a staggered pace. My throat was raw and the person next to me intertwined his fingers with mine. They were warm and I smiled. The Furies held us, elongated the moment before the next chords took over. I would have been happy dying then. The man whose hand I held pulled me to his side when they began to sing, slow and soft.
Day 13 After My Seventeenth Birthday, Post 26
Have you ever been scared that you’d lose your virginity to a god disguised as a goose?
Day 13 After My Seventeenth Birthday, Post 27
The man from the concert has been messaging me on Aphrodite – which – can we be honest with each other? – is the worst dating app.
We stayed up all night after the concert, just talking. We grabbed a coffee, and he didn’t make fun of me for ordering a hot chocolate.
I’m meeting him for dinner tonight.
Day 13 After My Seventeenth Birthday, Post 28
in apartment now. His.
writing quick update because he’s in bathroom.
tastes like Ambrosia Lite
hands are nice
lips are gentle
Day 14 After My Seventeenth Birthday, Post 29
Okay, new hill I’m going to die on: they should tell us more about sex in school because my parents sure as fuck didn’t.
Uh, yeah, not as cool as I thought it’d be. He asked me to leave right after, and he won’t answer my texts. I think I did it wrong.
My head hurts from the drinking and I’m sore.
Day 15 After My Seventeenth Birthday, Post 30
“How would I sum up my life?” Drake U. asked this in the comments and I’m assuming it’s an assignment for school, but I’ll give it a shot for you, no need to credit me:
Life has been moderately good for most of my time here on earth. It’s had its ups and downs – major ups and downs at that – but I could not, with the knowledge of starving children and civil war refugees, tell you that my life has been bad. I’m not sure that a life can even be defined as such – good and bad. If you’d like I could list everything “good” that has happened to me and then juxtapose those with the “bad,” but my list would be subjective. Who’s to say that the bad wasn’t good or vice versa? Yet, I still don’t think that Life, the big capital lettered kind, can be summed up in a word so vague and overused as good or bad. Extraordinary, maybe. Stupendous, proliferous, sure.
I even have trouble conceding to use those words. Life, in my seventeen years of experience, cannot be accurately represented in so many words. Not even books, novels of a thousand pages, can truly tell you of Life. You must experience it, you must create your own truths and adventures, you must hate but love more, and you must do all with the knowledge that your time is but a tick on a grand clock.
One tick, usually less, that’s all you get.
Day 16 After My Seventeenth Birthday, Post 34
There’s an old bridge out the outskirts of my town. It’s all red and rusted and totally fitting my current aesthetic. So, my friend and I are going to take pictures there today.
It’s dark outside my window. Hold on.
Day 16 After My Seventeenth Birthday, Post 35
Yeah, it’s definitely going to rain. I think that’ll be cool – maybe we can get a shot for my funeral program.
Day 16 After My Seventeenth Birthday, Post 36
Holy shit, all it took was me falling off a bridge to get all these new subscribers?
Hello and welcome.
I think I should write the reporter who covered the story a thank you letter. I suppose you would like to know what happened in my own words and not snippets of a ten-minute interview:
So, my friend and I were on the bridge – old and decrepit but sturdy under our feet – and he’s taking some classes in photography at the community college and needed a model. Naturally, I volunteered.
It was raining pretty hard by the time we got there, but he’s not going to die anytime soon and, well, surprise, it wasn’t my death day either. The story itself is pretty boring – I was leaning against the railing, and it chose that moment to snap.
There was a split-second moment before it happened that I knew it was happening, I could feel the way the railing was starting to give, could feel the final snap against my back. I didn’t move. What’s the worst that could happen?
I lost my footing soon after that and…fell. I fell. And it was exhilarating.
It probably took five seconds for me to hit the ground, but I could see my mother’s tears as she mourned for me, I could hear my father’s sobs as he tried to comfort her. In that moment, I truly let myself yearn for the life I would never live. In that moment, I was everything I could never be. I went to college, and I got a degree to be a math teacher and sometimes I baked my students cookies even though I knew I wasn’t supposed to. I fell in love. I would not have kids; I cannot be asked to mourn so long and so deeply. I kiss my mother and father goodbye. In that moment, I die a quiet death.
Day 16 After My Seventeenth Birthday, Post 37
The cast for my arm is pink and my doctor said I was lucky, but I’m pretty sure it’s just fate. I want to feel that alive again.
Day 16 After My Seventeenth Birthday, Post 38
I got a ride home from the Hermes car service, and the driver knew who I was. Hey, Helen, thanks for following along.
Day 19 After My Seventeenth Birthday, Post 42
Okay, I know I promised I would dress as whatever the top comment was in my last post, but the top comment was “Zeus” and I think he was (is, if you count sleeping and ignoring humanity as “is”) problematic, so I’m going with the second comment from Franny Stavros: “goth Athena going out.” Not entirely sure what that means, but I’ll post a pic soon.
In other news, I’m turning in my last essay before holiday for my history class – the usual shit – but did you know that Achilles’ mother dressed him in drag to keep him from war? They left that fact out in lower grade school.
Day 21 After My Seventeenth Birthday, Post 45
This is my favorite time of year. Right now, I am sitting on the park bench14 and watching the trees sway in the wind. When the leaves change color, anything feels possible. Maybe I can defy this, maybe I will live. I feel nothing when I pray, but today I swear to you, I swear, when the breeze pushed a few dead leaves at my feet, there was a whisper so soft and dark. Maybe my soul is awakening. Maybe death will be like a whisper. Maybe I will be the wind on the autumn leaves.
Day 21 After My Seventeenth Birthday, Post 46
My parents and siblings were gone when I got home from the park. I think they went to visit my grandparents. They didn’t leave me a note.
I turned off the lights in my bedroom, but I can’t sleep. The silence has rooted me on top of my sheets and the darkness is illuminating my fears and for some reason I can’t stop thinking about my mother’s face when I took the training wheels off my bike. She was so proud, and I will never see that look again. I feel damned again.
Day 22 After My Seventeenth Birthday, Post 47
Today’s the day, bitches. I think I’m going to turn off the comments for these last posts. I won’t be able to stomach your platitudes.
Day 22 After My Seventeenth Birthday, Post 48
I think I’m supposed to have something to say.
I don’t know if I can sum up my life, I don’t think any of us ever really have time to truly do it justice. It’s the inevitable and I don’t know what else to say and I don’t think I have any sage advice.
Maybe I’ll see you soon. Maybe I’ll be your autumn breeze. Probably not.
I don’t think this will be exhilarating.
I wish my mom was here. I’m scared.
I’m going to post this now.
Thank you for giving me my blaze of glory.
Day 22 After My Seventeenth Birthday, Post 49
And thank you for not abandoning me.
About the Author
K.D. Robertson is studying Journalism and Creative Writing at Mercer University. When she’s not doing schoolwork, she can be found giving tours of campus, having movie nights with friends, or curled up reading a book. She has been published in Discovering Bulloch and The Dulcimer Literary and Arts Magazine.