Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Please Don't Die

I don't think it's possible to cry yourself to sleep. I'm pretty sure you cry yourself into a state of exhaustion, you stop crying, and then you sleep. Do people actually nod off mid-sob?

I went to bed too late last night. And then I decided to read. Not the smartest idea I've ever had. But when it's late, my wisdom is impaired. As is my everyday caution. If I'm exhausted, my heart is on my sleeve. Those of you who've spent the night talking to me know this. I will pour out the intimate stuff of heart and mind when the rest of the world is sleeping. Too much energy is required to keep my guard up.

I was reading The Last Lecture, Randy Pausch's book based on his lecture of the same name. It's a little book, full of sound-bite wisdom, quirky stories, and a William Shatner tale that actually nudged a few tears down my face.

It's also a dangerous book. It makes you a little more dissatisfied with mediocrity. It gives you no excuses for laziness. It makes you want to crank up The Lion King soundtrack while speeding down the highway in a convertible on the way to your dream job as a Disney Imagineer. I kid you not.

I was skimming through. I was tired. I was almost done. And then one sentence destroyed me.

There's a moment in his lecture (Have you seen it yet?) near the end, where he brings out a birthday cake for his wife. It's a total surprise, the room erupts in song, and she comes forward to hug and kiss her husband. As the audience applauds, his wife whispers something in his ear. We assume it's along the lines of "I love you." It's sweet and moving and then we move on.

But the book expands.
As we held each other, Jai whispered something in my ear.

"Please don't die."

It sounds like Hollywood dialogue. But that's what she said. I just hugged her more tightly.
Those three words shattered my little world. I lost it. It was the most perfect honest sentence I'd read in a very long time.

I'm going to start reading the Sears catalogue in bed. Good night.

1 comment:

Motorokr said...

Well the sears catalog can be quite deep. I've had many an epiphany while reading the gardening section...