Live, Laugh, Love

October 24, 2010
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Live, Laugh, Love

Everyone has difficult times in their lives; some tougher to get through than others. There is only one time period in my life that’s stands out to be the most difficult part of my life to get through. I was only eleven when this obstacle began, yet still to young to comprehend how tragic the situation actually was at the time. My mom was diagnosed with colon cancer in June 2004, and was put in the hospital for surgery and recovery.

That summer the only times my brother, my sister, and I were able to go home was when we had to gather clothes; we migrated between our father’s house, our grandparents house, and our friends houses. After the summer ended and school started, we were able to move back into our house. Life was basically the same, except for the fact that my mom now had no hair and was vomiting every other hour due to the chemotherapy. In addition, my mom, a single parent of three, had to stop working. Despite how sick she was, she still attempted to work as much as she could.

Though we argued, like any other teenage daughter and mother would, our relationship grew stronger as I got older. I considered my mom as a best friend; she was someone who I was incredibly comfortable talking to and I adored being around. My friends loved my mom as much as I did as well. My mom used to come and eat lunch with me and my friends when I was in eighth grade. Even when I wasn’t home, some of my friends used to come over and spend time with my mom. She was loved by everyone, old and young.

In September 2007, I entered Shepaug Valley High School, and I spent a lot of time away from home my freshman year. I allowed our relationship to drift apart; partly because I was angry at her for forcing me to go to Shepaug Valley High School and the other part was me just being a rebel. I got myself into some trouble early in the summer of 2008, which really made it obvious that my relationship with my mom was lacking something.

Little did I know, the medicines for my mom had stopped working and all she had left as an option was to hope for an acceptance into a cancer clinical trial. But it is only now that I realize my mom knew she was dying; she took away my punishment months early. She knew I was unhappy, and she didn’t want to see me unhappy in her final months.

I started my sophomore year at New Milford High School and was having a difficult time adjusting to the new school. One of the days, my mom picked me up, and I immediately began talking about my needs and desires. My mom only turned to me and said “ Nichole, I’m dying.” The tumor in her liver was continuously growing and could not be stopped, so her liver was failing. My mom was dying and I had only acted spiteful and inconsiderate towards her when she clearly didn’t deserve that. Reality had finally hit me.

Shortly after that car ride, my mom was hospitalized. This time though, she only grew weaker and more sickly. And when matters didn’t improve, she was brought back home. Friends and family came to visit her before it was too late. Then things took a turn for the worst. I was just about to begin practice when my father called me saying that he needed to get me immediately; my mom wasn’t doing well.

The next morning, November 8th, 2008, I was woken up at seven only to be informed that my mom had passed away in her sleep. The wake and funeral took place a few days later and I had the love and support of my friends and family. Afterwards though, my brother, my sister, and I had to move out of our house and in with our father.
Mentally, I was not alright afterwards; I had trouble sleeping at night and I had a hard time letting out emotions and kept them all bottled up. It took much effort to get myself mentally stable. I saw a therapist who helped me tremendously to overcome this hardship. I even started to spend more time with my sister, who has now become the best friend that my mom was to me.

Having gone through this dreadful experience, I consider it to be my awakening. It has opened my eyes to reality and has changed my perspective on life. Prior to my mom’s death, I was inconsiderate towards others and took everything for granted, but now I appreciate every single thing in my life. I don’t treat people with disrespect anymore because you never know what could happen to them suddenly. And most importantly I cherish every second of my life and I treat it as though it were my last. “…You’ll cry because time is passing too fast, and you’ll eventually lose someone you love. So take too many pictures, laugh too much, and love like you’ve never been hurt, because every sixty seconds you spend upset is a minute of happiness you’ll never get back. Don’t be afraid that your life will end, but be afraid that it will never begin (Anonymous).”





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