What's it about?
I and You is about a spunky and quirky girl, Caroline, who is ill and a charming basketball player, Andrew. They come together to review Walt Whitman’s Leaves of Grass for an American Literature assignment and ultimately fall in love. But don’t be fooled, this play has a twist that will leave you in shock and awe.
What'd I experience?
Movies and television have the luxury to be able to easily surprise their viewers, theater does not have that luxury. Or so I thought. The ending of I and You was a bigger shock for me than the ending of The Sixth Sense. Yeah, it was that good. When I stepped out of that theater I wanted nothing more than to talk about what I thought of that ending but I can't, because it's better if you go out and experience the show for yourself.
If I'm not allowed to ruin the ending for you then you're going to have to endure me on this next topic, it's a rough one. If you’re not sitting down while reading this I highly suggest you do because today we’re going to be discussing the ultra-fun topic of coming to terms with your mortality. Three cheers for facing our eminent death! Hip, hip, hooray!
Death is a very weird topic to talk about, it’s one of those things where the older you get the more you’re afraid (just me?). It's kind of like filing your taxes and worrying whether or not you should invest in a 401K now or later. I feel like we, as a society, talk about death all the time. To me, it is so overused that now I go “Oh, of course they killed this guy off in Grey’s Anatomy, of course.”
Only when someone has died do we really begin to appreciate their presence in this world. But have you noticed that the idea of one's own mortality is a topic that’s not discussed nearly as often as death? In I and You the topic of mortality wasn’t hidden between clever little lines, it wasn’t used as a gimmick, it was there to see and observe.
Because of Caroline’s illness, death has always been a part of her life, ever since she was a little girl. Her mortality has always been in question. It was interesting to see that when she faced her own mortality she decided to retreat, to become a shut in, with her phone as her only contact with the outside world. She was a venomous girl who talked about her own death like it was a joke and insisted that the end was near for her.
What’s even more interesting, I noticed, is that regardless of what she believed about her own mortality she still envisioned a future. So, what does that mean?
There is a universal balance between life and death. It’s a part of you and me, a part of every living thing in this world. It is a fact that sooner or later we will all die. Some people argue that the topic is vulgar and that the thought would just make your life harder than it has to be. Others argue that it’ll happen when it happens and there’s no reason to worry or think about it. But, I think there is a reason.
When I think about my mortality I eventually think about the quality of my life. I begin to evaluate myself and everything I have done in this world. Am I interesting? Do I enjoy my career? Do I like where I live? Am I happy with who I am as a person? Am I happy with those around me? Usually, the only time these questions come up is when there is a traumatic event that showcases the fact that - hey, you're not invincible.
Coming to terms with mortality isn’t something you can do during a single sitting. Caroline had spent her whole life worrying about it and even then she wasn’t ready. But such a morbid thought still made her realize that there is the possibility of a wonderful life even though things look bleak for her now. Mortality reminds me that at any moment anything can happen.
But if it does, would you be okay with the life you have led thus far? Don’t aim to live a mediocre life with a sudden unfulfilling ending, instead, aim to live a life where every moment can be a powerful ending sentence on a concluding paragraph.