There are a few books that touch something deep within you when you are lucky enough to read them. This is one of those books. I thought I was handling it pretty well. This book is really about living and learning how to live your life with meaning. It is not a book about dying, even though the author was doing just that when he wrote this book. In fact, he did not quite finish it and the ending which his wife wrote to finish the book, sent my tear ducts into overdrive.
Dr. Paul Kalanithi is a young neurosurgeon all ready making a name for himself. Coming from a family of doctors, he is uncertain that the field of medicine is where he wants to be. But he soons discovers his place in the world and he knows he wants to make a difference in people's lives. Some lives that other people give up on. He is all most finished with his residency and he and his wife will soon be choosing their next medical jobs. That's when, after ignoring the symptoms he knows so well, he is diagnosed with Stage IV Lung cancer.
To say that this is devastating is stating the obvious, but his oncologist gives him hope. He did manage to live longer than expected and even have a daughter with his wife before he passed away. But this book, his book, will make a difference in more lives than he could ever have touched with his very talented hands.
I laughed, I cried, and even though I knew the outcome, I even hoped along with him. He had an amazing talent to tell a story and to make you want to find a way to be a better person. His book will not preach at you, but you will want to take up his unassuming banner and try to make yourself and the world a better place. Isn't that all we can hope for? Don't take my word for it. This is one book you need to read each and every word because they are all so beautifully written.