"The Taxes"

December 13, 2010
By , Ffld, CT
Sssssssssssslllllllllllllllluuuuuuuuuuuurrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrpppppppppp. Hot chocolate runs down my throat. Yummmmy. It was a cold winter day on a lake in NY. We enjoyed this place like no other. It was a unstable family tradition going up there.... My family and I had enjoyed a full day of tubing, skating, snow-mobiling, and drinking hot cocoa and we were ready for a little downtime.
“Joshua that tubing hill was awesome. We went down the hill so fast and my heart stopped when you bumped me,” my sister said at Ridin’ Hy Ranch.
“I know Ash, wasn’t it awesome,” I reply.
“The BEST EVER”
“Let’s Do it again tomorrow”
“If we have time,” my mom intervenes, “we have snowmobiling on the lake and games inside.”
“Even better,” my sister and I say in unison.
We were heading back to my family’s cabin to get showered and dressed for dinner. It was -2 degrees outside when we opened the door to the cabin. This was the middle of our stay and the high point of the vacation. That is when my mom got the call.
It was from my grandma, (Ama). My grandma’s sister, Dini (as my family and I called her), was in the hospital with the DNR (Do not resuscitate) ON and was in the ICU (Intensive Care Unit) with nobody allowed to see her. She was at St.V’s for over 4 months before she left the world. When my mom told us what happened, my mom started to cry and so did I. She was one of the few people in my life that I could go to. I could go to her because she knew “anything and everything.” It was a big shock when my mom told me Dini was hospitalized. I loved her as much as the world itself. Dini made everything glow and made me wonder why that was that or this was this.
When my mom told me what happened my brain flashed back to the time that I was in preschool and she was supposed to pick me up. My mom had to go to a conference in Greenwich for work and Dini was the closest one to the YMCA. She was fifteen min from a fifteen second ride late because of “The Taxes,” as we always used to joke about it. When she did finally show up she just laughed and made it a joke of it. It just was her nature. She just turned everything that could have been sad and angry into something exuberant and happy. She even had the teachers laughing for no reason. She had the power, strictness, and love that I think is something you don’t find or see too often.
The best things I ever did with her were going to the movies to see Harry Potter or making our own “Movie Nights” when there was nothing good in theaters. We used to invite everybody and their mothers (literally). Movie night is when we get pizza and then go up stairs to the loft with Sno Caps, Beef Jerky, M&M’s, Skittles, and everything else good to eat just to watch a movie like, The Birds and To Kill a Mockingbird, or RV and Gifted Hands. It started when Dini said, “Here, I want you to read this book [To kill a Mockingbird] then we are all going to go over your house and watch the movie itself.”
“OK”, I said, “If you want.”
“Can I bring some people over?”
“If you would like.”
“When do you want to do it?”
“How about Saturday night.”
“That sounds good to me.” Then later on that night she said the she was not feeling good and that she could not make it but still do it. Since I don’t say no to her I tried to work around it and put it off so she could be there but she caught me and said that it was ON or else….
She used to be a principal at Pumpkin Delight Elementary School, a teacher also at Pumpkin Delight Elementary School, and a friend to everybody she met. Even after tackling Cancer and surviving a kidney transplant she held on to her life. My cousin Sal (who lived with her) did not even visit her that often in the hospital because he, as the rest of the family, thought, that she was going to hold on and tackle this like everything else that she did. When we went to visit her we always had to wear gowns and masks and gloves and all of that stuff but it did not matter to my whole family, even Jake, my two year old little brother. The last thing I remember was her with a strict voice and a smile saying to him that it was not O.K. to go and touch the phone and she told me to never give up and to follow my heart to do what I think was right. I have listened to those words since she said them and I will never forget that she was the one. She was the one that was positive even in substantially poor situations. One time is when I got a b- in L.A. and she said go for extra help and I did so I also went for every subject and it improved my grades.
I will forever remember her and never forget all of the love and care that she gave me. Even though she is dead we still carry on the way she would want us to.





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