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The most obvious symptom of spinal disease is A) constant pain and B) the stooping back. Since Donny B. is a commercial director, and has to spend long hours sitting, walking, editing and directing, his weakened torso is supported with an iron (em)brace, that keeps him upright but also compromises his breathing capacity.
There are times when the disease announces its presence to Donny B., right in the middle of a shoot, and the pain would be so severe that everyone, including crew and actors and the rolling film, would have to pause. A pause that lasts until the kaleidoscopic needles from Donny's back fade.
I told my storyteller that Donny B. is an idiot. “Why does Donny B. bother putting himself through that kind of shit? He’s already dying from pain, why rush and add up to it?”
My storyteller, a guy who has seen and worked with Donny B., said, “Because he loves making movies. Sure, wallowing and sleeping through the pain would’ve been easier. But easy doesn’t make the cut when love is involved. Because love is the big picture.”
“Besides, whatever that disease is doing to his body,” he added with mild professional jealousy, “it’s improving his career. Clients actually seek him for professional collaboration. Maybe he’s that good at it. Or maybe he’s good at it because he loves doing it.”
I stared at my storyteller because I didn’t want to call “Bull!”. I knew that. Heck, every kid with a brand new PS3 knows that. We’d stay up for weeks if the thing we loved was in our hands. Absolutely. With every time. Every anniversary. And every person we say “I love you” to. Right?
Everything becomes easy when your wrap it with love. Donny B. just took his share and wrapped it with love. A kind of love that’s deeper than thresholds to pain. A kind of love that makes both living and dying and waiting to meet again, worth staying up for...
[ps: donny b. isn’t a real name. but his love story is. and it’s worth retelling.]