When Breath Becomes Air

The title above is the name of a book. My son Brandon recommended it to me. It was written by Paul Kalanithi and published posthumously in 2016 by Random House. Kalanithi was a resident of neurosurgery at Stanford Medical School when he found out he had 4th stage metastatic lung cancer.

The book is an autobiography. The author bravely and methodically chronicled his hasted journey to death. At 116 pages, it is a relatively short book. Yet I had to put it down many times, not because I was bored by the doctorspeak, some of which I didn’t understand, but to relieve myself from the shared grief with this honest person, analytical physician and fearless patient, all wrapped in one withering body. Turning the pages, you are listening to a
Shakespearean tragedy told to your aching heart, to your conscience.

Dr. Kalanithi died at the young age of 37. He was survived by his wife Lucy, also a doctor – an internist, and daughter Cady. She was 8 months old when
she lost her father.

On purpose I am giving away very few details about the book. I hope I’ve piqued your interest. Read it and it might add something to your understanding of living and dying. It did me.

*** The End ***

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