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God’s Gift to My World

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Each year, for every one hundred people with a brain aneurysm, roughly one of them will suffer a rupture or break. About forty percent of the people who suffer bleeding from an aneurysm die within the first month. My grandpa fit into the one percent of people who suffer the aneurysm rupture, but he stayed alive a lot longer than anyone would have ever expected. He may have been able to stay alive as long as he did because of the everyday support of my grandma, my hero, Adeline Mangano. When someone has gone through as much as my grandma has, the least I can do is call her my hero.
It was 2003 when my grandpa had his aneurysm. He was 73, and it was quite a shock; no one was expecting it. He was at the hospital for quite some time and it was my grandma who slept in a hospital waiting room for seventeen days straight. Just imagine a five foot tall, seventy year old, grey haired, feeble woman in a matching sweat-suit a size too small sleeping on a rock hard waiting room couch, crying because she has no idea what is going to happen to her husband. Most people would go home and come back the next day refreshed; however, my grandma just couldn’t leave. “I knew he’d be there for me,” says Adeline.
When you’re twiddling your thumbs with nothing to do but worry, you can become depressed and start to lose hope, but my grandma kept her head up and remained strong. She thought being there with him while he was going in and out of rehabilitation centers and nursing homes would help him get better; things seemed to be looking up. She couldn’t do much to help him physically, but she was all the emotional support he could have needed. After about seven months, he came home and he lived with my grandma with very little ability to participate in daily activities we all take for granted. Getting out of bed became a huge struggle. When you can’t go to the restroom by yourself, it means things are heading south, but. it was my grandma who was there to feed him, bathe him, walk with him, be his translator, and to summon to his every call. About a year later after the initial aneurysm, God called out to my grandpa and took him back home, to heaven.
How would you handle that? Being given this false hope that everything was going to be okay and that have it all swiped out from under your feet? If it were me, I don’t know how long I would have lasted on my own. I would have thought back on all the things I could have done and I would have drowned in my own regrets; however, that’s not what my grandma did. She stayed strong and did her best to push forward. “I don’t have one regret. I did everything I could for him. I don’t feel like I failed anyone,” she said. She was the one who kept him going, and she shouldn’t feel bad about anything. She was the best wife; she did all she could and everyone knows it.
One thing that Adeline said a lot was that she had “a good life.” My grandpa, her husband, was the only person she could think of to call her hero because he was the one who gave her that “good life.” She was happily married to this man for almost fifty years. “I don’t know anyone who did as much as we did.” They may have argued like none other, but there was in intense, undeniable passion behind their eyes that even a blind man would notice.
Considering the Lord took the love of her life away from her, it may have put a damper on her relationship with God. Anyone would be mad if someone they loved that much was taken out of their life, so I can’t blame her. She wasn’t a lady who showed up to church every Sunday and prayed before ever meal, but she did have faith. “He shouldn’t have given us the false hope that he did,” she said referring to Jesus. But in the end, she knows it was his time, and everything happens for a reason. She may be searching for that reason still, but she knows there is a reason why. After having a companion for so long, it’s more than difficult to move on with life. Her biggest struggle would be taking breaths to get through everyday without my grandpa. “I didn’t think I’d ever have to face this, this soon,” she said explaining how complicated it is to live life on her own.
If you ask someone to describe themselves, most people have limitless things to say. “I could tell you what I think about my neighbors, but I couldn’t tell you about myself,” said modest Adeline. “Motherly and warm,” said daughter-in-law Jane Williamson. “Loving/Caring,” said son John Mangano. I would have to go with generous, affectionate, and amazing, myself.

My grandma is one of the strongest people that I have ever met in my life. I don’t know what I would do if I was in the position that she has been put in, where getting through every day takes so much effort. As hard as it may be, she still pushes on. If I ever need a shoulder to cry on or someone to listen to, my grandma is always there. When I was having a rough time with my parents and was tired of complaining to my friends who didn’t understand, my grandma was the one who was there to just listen. If I need to go somewhere to get away from all the madness in the world to relax, my grandma is never fails to be there to welcome me with open arms. She may be your typical “old lady” who’s frugal with her money and will walk out of a sandwich shop because they are too pricey and she doesn’t want to pay six dollars for a sub sandwich, but she would give anyone the shirt off of her back. She’s the kind of person who will roll down her window and hand the homeless man a three dollars so he can go down to the nearest McDonalds and comfort himself with a meal for the night. She’s the kind of person who wouldn’t hesitate to hand you a few dollars if you misplaced your purse and were about to go shopping. I would know that, because she’s had to do that for me more than once. It’s not always a good thing that she puts other people before herself, but no one can blame her; she’s a mother! “I am proud of myself for getting through this. Sometimes I think I’m not, but I am,” says Adeline. If I can grow up to be half the woman that my grandma is, I will be perfectly satisfied with my life and what I’ve become. My grandma is my hero, and I don’t know where I would be in life if I ever was to lose her.





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