An elderly man, in the final days of his life, is lying in bed alone.
He awakens to see a large group of people clustered around his bed.
Their faces are loving, but sad.
Confused, the old man smiles weakly and whispers,
“You must be my childhood friends, come to say good-bye. I am so grateful.”
Moving closer, the tallest figure gently grasps the old man’s hand and replies,
“Yes, we are your best and oldest friends, but long ago you abandoned us.
For we are the unfulfilled promises of your youth.
We are the unrealized hopes, dreams and plans that you once felt deeply in your heart,
but never pursued.
We are the unique talents that you never refined,
the special gifts you never discovered.
Old friend, we have not come to comfort you, but to die with you.