I was good for so long. The end of the book was in sight. I had almost finished Randy Pausch’s The Last Lecture without breaking down into tears, and that would have been a very impressive accomplishment for me, seeing as I have the emotional constitution of Jell-O.
I think that everyone know about Randy Pausch by now. He was a brilliant computer scientist that was diagnosed with terminal pancreatic cancer in his late forties, given less than a year to live, and faced with the prospect of leaving behind his wife and three young children. He did what few people would do: he prepared and delivered a final lecture for his university entitled “Really Achieving Your Childhood Dreams.”
The tone of the book (which is itself based around the content of the lecture) is light. It is filled with inspiring stories about surpassing your potential, building your legacy, and wildly chasing your dreams. But it is also the last testament of a father to his kids. That alone let me know that there would be rough patches. It wasn’t until the very end of the book, where Pausch talks specifically about his three children, where I lost it completely.
His boys, Dylan and Logan, were six and three when he wrote the book. His daughter, Chloe, was eighteen months.
“I’m aware that Chloe may have no memory of me at all. She’s too young. But I want her to grow up knowing that I was the first man ever to fall in love with her.”
Dammit. There I go again.
Not cool, Pausch. Not cool.