I had just turned 17 when The Fault In Our Stars reached its peak in popularity. If you have been living under a rock for the past 5 years, it is a book about a young girl with cancer who meets a young boy who lost his leg to cancer. I cannot ruin the ending for those who haven’t seen or read it, but it is a tragedy and love story all mixed into one. It leaves you on the edge of your seat with every flip of the page, and I must say that it is my favorite book ever….. Don’t tell J.K. Rowling.
I have felt a connection with this book since its release. I did not have cancer that spread like Hazel’s did, but I was a sick kid in my own right. I understood her pain and suffering. I understood her frustrations. I was reading it over again (for the millionth time) not too long ago, and I found out she had Thyroid cancer before it spread to her lungs. This was weird for me because my connection with Hazel grew just recently, as I had found out I had early stage thyroid cancer cells. COMPLETELY HEALED ON THE SAME DAY I FOUND OUT I HAD IT!
That is not the only reason I thank John Green for this masterpiece, though. Let’s go back to when I was 17. I was starting my second season as “Pit-Crew” at a small local theme park called Go-Karts Plus. I was working a ride with this new guy, who made me laugh the first time I met him, and for some strange reason I felt a connection with him too. The first time we talked, he asked me what my favorite book was. I had just finished The Fault In Our Stars and was obsessed, so I told him. I told him it was being made into a movie. This boy decided to buy the book, ask for my number so we could discuss it, and take me to the movie on our first date. Flash forward to now, and we have been married 5 months, have an apartment together, and are best friends. He even earned the nickname “slick” from my parents who recognized how smooth he was.
It is crazy how much one book can change your life. What if John Green decided not to write the book? Would Andres and I have met? Would we have gone on the date that started everything?
What if I had not connected with Hazel Grace when I read it? Would I have told him it was my favorite book? Would the date have still happened?
I remember the first date perfectly. We went to Olive Garden, because I told him it was my favorite restaurant. I was mad at him because he made me talk on the phone with his brother whom I had never met. He then ordered a cheesecake, but I was too nervous to take a bite.
We then went to the movies, and awkwardly sat like stiff poles side by side. I would catch glimpses of him from the corner of my eye, in hope that I could see if he was enjoying himself. Then came an almost inappropriate part in the movie and I was so mad that I had forgotten about that part, however happy the theater was dark so he could not see my face as red as an apple. (Typing this while talking to him, and he could tell I was bright red. OH NO!)
There is no better way to close out this blog than with a quote that goes perfectly with my love story…
“As he read, I fell in love the way you fall asleep: slowly, and then all at once.”
― John Green (The Fault In Our Stars)