“If you were given a book with the story of your life would you read the end?”
That prophetic statement was Tweeted out a year ago by Jose Fernandez. Fernandez, died September 25th in a boating accident at only 24 years old.
If Fernandez did read his life story, he would have learned some valuable lessons:
Growing up in Cuba, Fernandez defected unsuccessfully three separate times. Each time he was caught, he was sent to prison. But his love of his family and his desire to play baseball didn’t deter him. On his fourth attempt, he and his family reached Mexico, but not before his mother fell overboard and Fernandez dove in to save her life.
A star pitcher for the Miami Marlins, Fernandez played in the 2013 MLB All-Star game and won the National League’s Rookie of the Year Award in 2013.
Fernandez called his Grandmother Olga the “love of his life.” A regular at the Marlins games, Olga proudly wore a jersey with “Abuela” on the back; Spanish for Grandmother. A family man, Fernandez and his girlfriend announced just a week before he died that they were expecting their first child.
In the story of your life, you don’t have to flee a communist country or be a star athlete to have a compelling story. These lessons we learned from Jose Fernandez can be applied to any of us. It can be summed up by saying, “give it your all, don’t give up, and appreciate what you have.” If he could achieve all that he did despite his circumstances, what can you accomplish?
It is said the brightest lights burn out the quickest. But with so much going for him, you can only assume that Fernandez would not have read the end of his book. His story wasn’t supposed to end, and he lived life to the fullest.