"In March I found out that I had six months to live," Sarah Hitchin wrote in The Guardian in May 2007. As far as I know, the spring of 2007 was her last.
Strangely enough, I blogged about what I would have done if the spring of 2007 were my last. Back then, I concluded that I would like to continue as if nothing were wrong, meaning that I would be studying, even if there would be no exams: "I would gladly choose the stress of preparing for the future over the stress of not having one".
Sarah’s description of her situation is strangely funny, and very down to earth. She didn’t feel instantly wise. Three hours after being given six months to live, she was "bored with it" and wanted to drink some wine. The tragedy of leaving her partner behind is described in everyday details: "I must make sure he knows how to turn on the dishwasher before I go."
Just like me, Sarah worried about not having time to see the movies she wanted to: "I find myself thinking, "Oh, I must watch that film before I go", as if I am going away for six months and then I will be back." But of course my worry was hypothetical; hers was very real.
Since writing about my hypothetical death, I’ve used the idea of "six months left" as a way to check on myself. I’ve asked myself "Would I quit this job if there were only six months left?" "Would I drop out of school?" "Would I stay friends with these people?" If the answer to "Would I drastically change my life if there were six months left of it?" is "Oh, YES!" then, maybe I should change it, just in case.
And right now, I would stop saving money and use all of it to get my faraway friends to Oslo. I would give more compliments, because telling people they’re great is more important than worrying that they will feel weird about it. Beyond that I wouldn’t change a thing.
I guess that means I’m happy.
Image source: icanread