Book No. 44 – Veronika Decides To Die

13 Jun

Book number 44 is called Veronika Decides to Die by Paulo Coelho, who is one of my favorite Authors ever. This book is a little bit morbid, but it has so much depth and insight to it that I couldn’t put it down! The story is based on a girl named Veronika, who decides that because she has never felt great joy or sadness, she doesn’t deserve to be alive – and she doesn’t want to be alive. She feels as though she is just existing, not living – and that is not something she wanted to continue to do. So, she overdoses on pills in the hopes of finally leaving the world she has grown to despise, but she is found just in time and sent to a special place for people like her. People who are different from the rest of society and can’t or won’t live in the outside world. When she is admitted into this place for “crazy people,” her doctor informs her that she has a heart problem that is going to kill her, and soon. With the news of this, Veronika realizes maybe she doesn’t want to die, and she begins to appreciate the last moments she has. She speaks her mind, she is no longer afraid to be herself, she takes risks, and stands up for herself… and ironically with the news that she has only weeks until she dies, she begins to truly live for the first time. She falls in love with another patient at the institution, she makes friends, and she adopts an “I don’t give a fuck” attitude. She stops living to please others, and she starts living for herself. She begins to become a different version of herself, a version that she loves, a version that had been hidden deep inside of her before her attempted suicide. What she doesn’t realize is that her doctor has actually made up her heart condition. She doesn’t have one, and is perfectly healthy. When she was admitted into the institution, he decided to conduct an experiment on her. He pumped her with medications so that it would appear that she had a heart condition and his prediction was that by telling her she had a heart condition, she would appreciate her life, rather than trying to end it by committing suicide. Eventually, Veronika and the patient she falls in love with decide to leave the institution and flee in the night. Every night she goes to sleep thinking, “this could be the end.” Of course, it never is. And without even realizing it, she had been given a gift by her doctor. In death, he gave her life. He proved the thesis to his experiment correct – he believed that it was only in facing death, could one truly appreciate life. Do you guys agree with this? I do. It is only when we feel a tremendous amount of sadness that we can appreciate those happy moments. It is only through hardships that we learn to persevere. And it is only through death, that we TRULY, profoundly, appreciate life. So, you have two choices in life. Control your mind – or let your mind control you. Make mistakes in your life, but don’t ever make the mistake of destroying or ending your life. “An awareness of death encourages us to live more intensely.” So be aware that this life is ephemeral. One day you will wake up and there wont be any more time to do the things you’ve always wanted to do. The time is now. Right here. Right now. This moment. Live in it.

xo.

TJ

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2 Responses to “Book No. 44 – Veronika Decides To Die”

  1. The Other Watson June 14, 2012 at 9:03 am #

    This book has been on my shelf a while…I think I need to get on and read it! 😛

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