pauly bleaker

Dear John Green,

I want to know if Hazel dies. Or should I say, when Hazel dies. 

I want to know if her parents stay together after her funeral– for the long run. I want to know if one day, they can be happy in the middle ground between being parents, and being parents to a girl who died of cancer. 

Does Peter Van Houten ever get his shit together? Probably not. I imagine that he will forever exist as a fragment of a man, sitting on the side of the road sipping from and empty flask.

Does Lidewij Vliegenthat and her boyfriend ever get married? Do they at least, get to be happy?

I know that I’m never going to get answers to these questions, and perhaps the key to coping with Augustus’ death, and Hazel’s sudden, but inevitable passing is to imagine that the world is full of rainbows, and everyone gets to be happy. To imagine that Kaitlyn eventually finds a true love, and gets to know what that feels like, and that Isaac does, in the not so far away future, get his stupid robot eyes. And that one day, when he grows up to become an adult, realizes that Monica was never going to be his “always.”

What becomes of Isaac? After Hazel dies? To be blind, and truly alone in the world has got to be the loneliest of places. I mean, I guess he’s got his family, and perhaps other friends that we’re never introduced to— but I can’t imagine his blind-guy video games would be much fun with his mother. 

Sadly, a song called Road Regrets by Dan Mangan reminds me of Augustus. It goes:

“But watch out for the paraphrase, cause they will crown you then they will take your legs, see the cost is more then what you get paid. We do it anyway. It’s a shame, it’s a crying shame, thems the breaks. And ain’t it always the way. It takes you back to from where it is you came.”

Augustus as a character is appealing. The handsome, confident boy, who is mostly romantic and all poetic. Some times he reminds me of Paulie Bleaker from Juno. When Juno says “You’re like, the coolest person i’ve ever met, and you don’t even have to try.” and Paulie says “I try really hard, actually." 

Augustus tries really hard to be deep. But at first, he’s not trying for Hazel, the cigarette metaphor wasn’t made to impress her, it was made to make him feel significant. We all want to be special. We all want to have a purpose in the world, to matter. But the hard reality is that no one is special. We’re all human in this pathetic little world, and if we let it take us down, it will. With crushing blows to self-esteem, and feelings of self-worth. Augustus made a choice to feel special. And maybe thats all we need. Is to make a choice to not fall into the oblivion of unspecialness (and yes thats a word, I just made it one.)

Which is why it’s such a beautiful life Hazel Grace. And why it would be an honour to get my heart broken by you Hazel Grace. Because even in the most heartbreaking of situations, if you choose to look at the sunshine, eventually the air returns. 

So maybe it doesn’t matter what happened to everyone at the end of TFIOS—- all that matters is that they all lived, for a short period of time, in all of us.