Mitchgives his life story since graduation. He didn't keep in touch with Morrie or any of his other college friends. Mitch moved to New York City to be a professional pianist,but found to his dismay that the world was uninterested in his talents. Mitch felt like he was failing, and began to give up on his dream.
Mitch is feeling the difficulty of adulthood. He is beginning to change and lose his youthful innocence and optimism as he experiences these failures.
While in New York, Mitch lived in an apartment below his favorite uncle, who falls ill with pancreatic cancer. Mitch felt helpless as his uncle's health declined.
Mitch feels out of control of his life when faced with the impending death of his uncle. This is the first major death he has to deal with, and there's nothing he can do to help.
After his uncle died, Mitch began to feel as though he needed to move faster in order to make sure he didn’t fall into the life of corporate drudgery that his uncle had led and hated. Mitch stopped writing and playing music and instead earned a Journalism degree. He took various jobs on the East Coast before settling in Detroit as a sports reporter. As he became more and more successful, he began to accumulate material wealth such as cars and property.
The death of his uncle spurs Mitch to action as he tries to take control of his life. He tries to gain control by moving faster and doing more things, and he identifies the corporate life as one he absolutely doesn't want. Reporting on sports, however, is lucrative and allows him to move fast.
Mitch met and married his wife, Janine, after seven years of dating. While he promised her they could start a family, it never happened. Instead, he concentrated on work accomplishments because it made him feel in control of his life.
Mitch sometimes thought about Morrie, although he threw away mail from Brandeis University and lost contact with all of his friends from school. He did not know about Morrie's illness until something caught his attention on television one night in 1995.
Here we see how far Mitchhas removed himself from his Brandeis community (and, presumably, his old ideals). He willingly denies participation in that community by throwing out mail and choosing to not stay in contact with Morrie.