Three Reasons to Live
Nicholas went to see The Sessions - he didn't want to go with me, so he went with his dearest and oldest friend instead (a guy, of course)! They loved the film and Nick had lots of questions afterwards about sex, love and relationships. Reading this interview with Susan Fernbach, I realize now more than ever how similar Nick is to Mark O'Brien. Their approach to life is almost identical (although Nick might be slightly more of a jock and slightly less of an intellectual than O'Brien).
In 2005, Nicholas won an award in high school for 'academic perseverance', he wrote an acceptance speech that read:
I thought that I would share with you my secrets of perseverance. Talking about pain or ongoing challenge is very boring to me. I would choose having fun and learning at school over sitting home and complaining any day. I will never give up in school because frankly, I am just too curious and excited to find out what is going to happen next in each of my classes. Some people call this approach having a positive attitude; I call it wanting to express my opinions. I have opinions in my personal life, my school, my community, and my country. And if I want people to hear my opinions, I know I have to be involved. I know how to find information about my interests, and how to use that information. I AM NEVER BORED!!! My advice to other students is to keep trying, even if it takes a long time to achieve academically. The world is far more interesting if you know something about it. At times we all may face some difficulties, but it is important to remember to never give up, and never give in.
Fernbach is able and eloquent both in her caregiving and her loving of someone with a huge heart and great physical limitations. I hope and pray that one day, Nick will know love as O'Brien did.