"And what," asks the stone etcher, "do you want engraved on your gravestone?"
I stare at the slab of granite before me. Tall, and majestic, polished to a mirror sheen, and black, in a sea of white marble. Perhaps black was the only thing we had in common, for I was the sheep of the very same colour.
What do I want engraved, he asks.
How do I want to remembered by, he means.
I have thought about this before, which is of course, the reason I'm here in the first place, but, haven't we all. Don't we all want to leave legacies behind? Something. Anything, that would make us feel that our time on earth wasn't wasted. Wasn't futile. That we mattered.
"Nothing." I reply
"Uh huh, nothing."
That, I've decided, is how I want it to be. That is how I want to go. I'd like to believe, that through the course of my life, there are lives I've touched, just like mine has been touched by the ones before me, and no gravestone can etch words stronger than these memories, these feelings which couldn't be bound by the rules of time.
That is what I leave behind. Not an ornament depicting my heroism, or an edited version of me, but memories for the few who mattered. It lives with them and it'll die with them. I do not need the world to remember. And when people walk by, and see a stone unmarked, maybe they'll never know who I was, but I hope they get a glimpse of their reflections and I hope they realize they matter, not because the world remembers them, but because they've loved and they've been loved in return.