31 Existential Stories to Leave You Thinking “What If…”


Sometimes there are scenarios in life that just make you think. They remind us to stop and smell the roses, to call that friend, to help a stranger, and to remember to just be kind to people.

These 31 instances do just that. Take a look.

1. I found my own engagement ring

Today, on the one-year anniversary of my boyfriend’s death, I decided it was time to clear his clothes out of our closet. In one of his coat pockets I found a diamond engagement ring and concert tickets to my favorite band dated the Saturday after he passed.

2. At his funeral

Today, my water broke at my husband’s funeral.

3. 48 more hours

Today, I’m a neurosurgery candidate, going under the knife in 2 days. Last month I was a healthy 24-year-old female athlete. Today, signed a DNR, just in case I come out as a vegetable. Today, I had to make a living will. Is it really my time? In 48 hours I’ll find out.

4. Isn’t it ironic

Today, it is ironic that on the same day I am contemplating suicide, my brother learns he has a tumor on his pancreas.

5. Quite the realization

Today, I realized that if we all had told her how we felt BEFORE the funeral instead of AT the funeral, it’s possible there wouldn’t BE a funeral.

6. Most chipper person

Today, a girl who I see everyday at work, who’s always the most chipper person in the office, committed suicide.

7. Licked the tears off my face

Today, after I watched my dog get run over by a car, I sat on the side of the road holding him and crying. And just before he died, he licked the tears off my face.

8. Celebrate the green ones

Today, while I was driving my grandfather to his doctor’s appointment, I complained about hitting 2 red lights in a row. My grandfather chuckled and said, “You always complain about the red lights, but you never celebrate the green ones.”

9. Sad day

Today in downtown San Diego, I watched a blue-collar Mexican man get harassed for being Mexican. It was a blatant act of discrimination. And the man actually began crying. As he left the office building, he took off his jacket. His T-shirt underneath read, ‘I love the USA!’

10. What an interview

Today, I interviewed a woman who is terminally ill. ‘So,’ I tried to delicately ask, ‘What is it like to wake up every morning and know that you are dying?’ ‘Well,’ she responded, ‘What is it like to wake up every morning and pretend that you are not?’

11. What a way to meet

Today, it’s been exactly 25 years since my husband risked his life and carried his female neighbor out of a college apartment complex as it burned to the ground. And that’s how I met my husband.