slowly, then all at once

the fault in our stars

I promise this won’t turn into the death blog, but I just finished “The Fault in Our Stars,” a book I enjoyed very much for several reasons, including the way death was described and dealt with. It looms over the book’s characters, who are teens with cancer.

The book is written in the voice of a teenager, which was enjoyable. I liked her spunk and edge while facing horrific things. The book gave me perspective of what having cancer at a young age might feel like – to always wonder if you’re going to live or die, and continue living anyway.

I’m going to share some of my favorite lines – some may sound familiar as they seem to keep popping up on Pinterest … at least in my feed.

Enjoy!

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I fell in love the way you fall asleep: slowly, and then all at once.

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My thoughts are stars I cannot fathom into constellations.

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That’s part of what I like about the book in some ways. It portrays death truthfully. You die in the middle of your life, in the middle of a sentence.

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When you go into the ER, one of the first things they ask you to do is rate your pain on a scale of one to ten, and from there they decide which drugs to use and how quickly to use them. I’d been asked this question hundreds of times over the years, and I remember once early on when I couldn’t get my breath and it felt like my chest was on fire, flames licking the inside of my ribs fighting for a way to burn out of my body, my parents took me to the ER. nurse asked me about the pain, and I couldn’t even speak, so I held up nine fingers.

Later, after they’d given me something, the nurse came in and she was kind of stroking my head while she took my blood pressure and said, “You know how I know you’re a fighter? You called a ten a nine.”

But that wasn’t quite right. I called it a nine because I was saving my ten. And here it was, the great and terrible ten, slamming me again and again as I lay still and alone in my bed staring at the ceiling, the waves tossing me against the rocks then pulling me back out to sea so they could launch me again into the jagged face of the cliff, leaving me floating face up on the water, undrowned.

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