When one sees breath as air!
What can you say about a book written by a neurosurgeon who was dying? Maybe, I should say that this book is a celebration of a life lived. Or maybe a celebration of each breath. I felt it was wonderful that he, when on a BiPAP, took a call on whether he should be intubated. His last call.
The book is lyrical, tough and also funny. I will capture a few random excerpts here because I feel they describe the book best. The picture is also an excerpt that I hope you can read. I loved it because though I love slang, I had never realized swearing could serve such a wonderful purpose. Maybe.
A few other samples of Kalanithi’s writings:
burke: “to kill secretly ….. for the purpose of selling the victims body for dissection.”
“with what strife and pains we came into the world we know not, but ’tis commonly no easy matter to get out of it.”
In these moments, I acted not, as I most often did, as death’s enemy, but as its ambassador.
…. Jeff paused and I awaited his story. Instead ….. he said “Well, I guess I learned one thing: if I;m ever feeling down about my work, I can always talk to a neurosurgeon to cheer my-self up.”
Here are a few pages you might like: