Tuesday, December 30, 2008

The Last Lecture - Randy Pausch

I am still pondering death (because of Mark). Don't worry - I will move on. Just not quite yet. I was at a community memorial service for Mark in North Carolina on the 28th. It was well attended. Many kind words about what a great, funny, kind and generous person Mark was.

There is another Celebration of Mark's Life in Guelph at 11 AM at the Arboretum at the University on January 17th.

A friend reminded me of Randy Pausch's last lecture which is both a book and a video. Pausch was a young professor dying of pancreatic cancer. His last lecture were his final words of wisdom.

Pausch's message is simple and obvious. The clarity of knowing his time was more limited than most is what made it insightful. We listen to those who are dying. His message: Live for the moment; have goals; work hard; there is nothing wrong with work; think; leave a legacy in the hearts of others.

It is our duty to use the time we have well. I am pondering how best to do this.

Quote of the day (which as an avid bridge player Mark would appreciate):

"We cannot change the cards we are dealt, just how we play the hand."

-Randy Pausch (Oct 23/1960 - July 28/2008)


At 1:51 PM, Blogger Christine Anne (Fernie) Austin,C.A. said...

The last lecture was a powerful and thoughtful message from a dying father to his children. It is amazing what people can create when they are not into self-pity. I hope I will have the wisdom and courage to be as introspective and giving in my life.

My brother(and best friend) drowned in 1967 (when I was 9). In 1997 I still had not dealt with his death because I never learned how. My friend Barb lost her son in 1996 and could talk about him without falling apart. I asked how she coped and she told me that when she started focusing on the wonderful moments that she had with him and stopped thinking about the future she would not have with him, it became much easier. I finally gave up trying to have a better future with David and the pain eventually the pain began to subside. Unfortunately, there is so much guilt and shame around his accidental drowning that my family members can not talk about him so I must be satisfied to relive the few memories that I have by myself.

Every time I read of your struggle to get past Mark's death, my heart breaks for you. I am glad that you and your family can share stories about his life. He will live on in your memories and in how he impacted your lives. Eventually the memories will come and the pain will subside, and that is a good thing because we don't want to be afraid of our memories. Keep the ones that serve you and let the rest be forgotten. I guess we can be grateful to have had such wonderful people to love in our lives.

At 5:17 PM, Blogger Sue Richards said...

There is no rush Jim. Time heals.

At 9:39 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

Loved your quote of the day which reminded me of one of my favorites.
“I can't change the direction of the wind, but I can always adjust my sails."

I'm familiar with Randy Pausch's Last Lecture, the book and the vid-uplifting.
It can be viewed on youtube for anyone who can afford the time to watch it, a bit lengthy but well worth watching. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ji5_MqicxSo


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