The death of Roger Ebert struck me harder than I thought. I am not a huge movie-going person, so I didn’t really pay attention to his reviews. At most, he was just always in the background, and if I wondered if a movie was good or not, I would see what he thought. Living in Chicago, it is also kind of difficult to ignore his presence; his name seems to be everywhere.
I was struck by his passing, when I was listening to a rebroadcast of one of his last interviews on the radio show Sound Opinions from 2006 (If you love rock history, this episode is a good listen). While setting up the replaying of the interview, the hosts commented that he had been struggling with cancer for over 10 years. Over 10 years!
Here’s a guy that kept moving forward, in spite of his situation. Roger Ebert pushes on to continue meaningful work, even though he hasn’t been able to speak for the last 6 years. I was humbled by the idea, especially considering the fact that I can so easily get tripped up by the smallest bump in the road.
I also thought about all the times I’ve felt like a victim in a particular situation. When stacked up next to the courage that Roger Ebert showed, I’m embarrassed. Roger had a vision for his life and was willing to keep fighting for that idea. He knew what he wanted to be about, and went after it, regardless of obstacles.
I guarantee that this was not easy for him. And from the outside looking in, I could totally understand if Roger decided to recede from life and possibly even become bitter for the situation handed to him. Instead, he fought for every ounce of life that was left to him.
There are 2 things here for me, and hopefully you:
Do I have a vision for my life that I am willing to fight for, regardless of the obstacles?
Am I fighting for it?