Last week I had a day where I was feeling sorry for myself. My husband was working long hours, the kids each were struggling with their own little, but big in their minds, issues, my to-do list was very long and the dog got into the garbage and coffee grinds were peppered throughout my kitchen floor.
I picked up When Breath Becomes Air thinking I would take a short break to read a chapter, and next thing I knew it was hours later and my cheeks were stained with tears. I took a required break to pick up the kids, do homework and feed them dinner and as soon as possible I was back devouring the book until I made it to the last page.
When Breath Becomes Air is a memoir of a neurosurgeon who learns he will die of lung cancer at a young 36-years-old. Paul Kalanithi and his wife, Lucy, didn’t complain, they continued to live (even deciding to have a beautiful baby girl) and inspire me tremendously.
This is one of those books that you will remember forever. I am really making an effort to resist complaining about the little stuff and remember the bigger picture.
As the doctor eloquently wrote: ” I began to realize that coming in such close contact with my own mortality had changed both nothing and everything. Before my cancer was diagnosed, I knew that someday I would die, but I didn’t know when. After the diagnosis, I knew that someday I would die, but I didn’t know when.”
Although heartbreaking this is also a beautifully written story of a doctor becoming a patient and a short but meaningful life that we can all learn from.
Have you read When Breath Becomes Air?
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