After completing the first draft of EMTEOTW I met with my uncle. It was a humid summer day, but the rooftop terrace of his Tel Aviv apartment was nice and breezy. He was supposed to get his first chemo treatment the next morning. It was kind of a personal ‘end of the world’ scenario for him, and for me too because he’s my favorite uncle.
We stood on the terrace and watched the hustling and bustling city below, people living their life casually while our life was breaking apart. The roof was high enough to see all the way to the Mediterranean which was blue and serene.
So, I told him my story. Well, just the plot.
Then, my uncle who is 20 years older than me looked me in the eye and said –
“It happened to me when I was a little boy.”
I was overwhelmed. How could it be? This story was a figment of my imagination.
“What do you mean?” I asked, and he said, “I remember overhearing something about the end of the world. Maybe it was on a radio show. And I remember going to the dunes near the beach with a friend, where we waited for the end of the world to come.”
“And what happened?”
He smiled. “It didn’t come.”
Fortunately, the personal end of the world scenario didn’t come either. My uncle healed. But he was the first of many relatives and friends who heard the story and said they identify with the little protagonist and the way he feels regarding the end of the world. So, I think there’s something universal about this experience. Have you experienced it too?