Most of the chapters in Tuesdays With Morrie begin with a discussion of Morrie’s declining health. However, in “The Fourteenth Tuesday: We Say Goodbye,” there are no new machines or nurses in Morrie’s home. Rather, when Albom receives a call from Morrie’s wife, Charlotte, Albom learns that Morrie has reached his final days. The gravity of this final stage is emphasized when Albom arrives at Morrie’s home and finds that his mentor is not even in the study. He is in bed, has been cancelling the appointments he holds so dear, and has been sleeping a great deal.
Albom, perhaps not wanting to admit the extent to which Morrie’s illness has changed for the worse, enters the bedroom with his tape recorder and tapes. However, he realizes his impotence when he reflects, “I always had tapes.” They will not save Morrie. Albom goes on to reflect that he will not be taping any conversations during this visit. Instead, as the chapter title suggests, they will be saying goodbye.
Albom does not know how to say goodbye. Morrie, ever the teacher, explains that the trick is to express one’s love for the other. Although he is extremely ill and weak, Morrie expresses how much his time with Albom has meant to him. He tells Albom that he has a good soul and that they have always loved each other. Morrie has long joked that he would try to break through Albom’s shell of not expressing emotions; in “We Say Goodbye,” Albom finds himself crying as he kisses Morrie goodbye.
Although most of the chapters in Tuesdays With Morrie end with a brief anecdote or a quote from a poem, this chapter has no additional content to add context or a sense of conclusion to the interview. Instead, it emphasizes Albom’s last exchange with Morrie. Albom jokes that he will expect to see Morrie in better shape the following week, to which Morrie whispers in reply, “Okay, then.”