Contraria

Edward C. "Coe" Heller is a Los Angeles-based film producer who believes that if everyone knows something to be true it is probably false. A friend, tired of listening to rants has suggested a blog as a harmless outlet. Coe believes it is vanity, and a chasing after the wind, but is unsure it is harmless.

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

A Month, Maybe Two



John died almost five years ago http://contrariat.blogspot.com/2013/08/.  Now another John has died in December, at 58, a friend, associate, and a guy I knew for 20 years and talked to four or five times a week for the last several years.   The process is grueling with one dead guy and an extended network of family and friends as collateral damage.
Now Peter has it, taking him next.  Big, gregarious Peter I’ve known for almost 50 years as a close friend and colleague, and the doctor told him last week, “a month, maybe two”.   Peter, a whirlwind of energy, intellect, passions and compassion has been at it for a couple of years, taking this and that treatment, up, down, scans, a whole vocabulary which has spilled out over lunches like virtual puke.  He is philosophical, beyond worry about himself, quoting Atul Gawande, but concerned for the loneliness he will leave his family.
What should anyone do with a month, maybe two?   Trophy Wife says that my job is clear.  “Show up and Shut up” which seems wise and doable, and I hope I don’t let life get in the way of that simple task.
What would I do if it were me?  I don’t know.  I suppose some people would do a bucket list, a frenetic travel or spending binge, but I wouldn’t see the value of creating memories that can’t be enjoyed.  Other people might do what they ordinarily do, ignore it  until the day when they can’t do it any more.  Someone might break down, and someone else might gather friends and family for goodbyes or some kind of death watch.
I probably agree most with Morrie Schwartz of Tuesdays with Morrie that how we die doesn’t matter.  How we live does.    It should not make a difference if we have one month maybe two or if we get hit by a bus and do not come home one day.  If I were guessing today I would guess that I would not want to be a bother to people.  Put me away, remember the good days and let it be.  And that’s what I think when it doesn’t matter, it’s not me.  Peter seems to pretty much be at peace which is good, and I’ll show up and shut up.

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