The Best Day This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

When I was seven years old my mom was diagnosed with ovarian cancer. For this type of cancer the survival rate is low. My family was devastated.

I was too young to understand. I had no idea that every day with my mom had to be the absolute best because we didn’t know if it would be our last. I didn’t understand why everyone was suddenly taking time out of their busy lives to come over and sit on our couch. I just knew that my family was closer than ever.

The doctors put my mom on chemotherapy. I was told, “Mommy is going to lose all her hair,” “Mommy is sick, let her sleep,” “Mommy can’t come to the dance recital; she’s tired.” I was sad that she was missing everything. I was sad that even when she did have the strength to pull herself out of bed, you could see she was so sick. Still, at seven I had no idea how sick.

The doctors told us my mom might survive with surgery. But it could also kill her. She agreed to have it. The surgery was scheduled for the day after Columbus Day.

The day before the surgery I had off from school, and my mom planned the best day of my life, everything I loved at seven. Everything that she knew would put a smile on my face. I didn’t realize that the best day of my life with my best friend was a day that she was really scared since it could be her last. She was making a special memory for me. This could be the last day I would remember with her, the last one we shared.

The day began with her waking me up saying, “Kate, I have a surprise for you. Come see.” The surprise was a doll I had wanted for the longest time and a locket. Throughout the day, she told me everything that she thought I would need to know to grow up and be a good person; she told me to be the best I could be and that I would always make her proud. We had a picnic in the park, and it was so cold that we moved to the car. The day was filled with laughter. For the first time in a long time I could see she was happy. Really happy. I would never forget her smile, or the way her eyes lit up as if we were the same age. It was the best day of my life, and I will never forget the conversations we shared, which I didn’t realize were intentional.

The day passed and with the next day, it was time for the surgery. There were no tears; I think I understood that I could lose my mom, because they did tell me she could die. We waited all day for news from the doctor. Everyone jumped when a door opened or anyone walked into the waiting room. Finally the doctor came in, and the news was what we had prayed for.

The experience that my family went through was truly a roller coaster. I will never forget that day together, and how her illness pulled our family closer. I understand now how lucky we were. I truly appreciate life and honor my mom for being so strong.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.

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This article has 6 comments. Post your own now!

Vicky11 said...
Jul. 25, 2011 at 7:37 am
It made me cry...but in a good way :)
Alon_Freevoice said...
Jul. 25, 2011 at 1:31 am
Aw. Wait! I need to hold these tears back!
yoitsme said...
Jul. 3, 2011 at 4:12 am
I really liked the story. I can tell how much your family means to you... and how special this memory is to you.
bunnyboo said...
Mar. 19, 2009 at 2:56 pm
i thought that this was an ok story but it was a little boring sorry. but it was a nice journy
Miss.Breann said...
Oct. 10, 2008 at 5:49 pm
I LOVE this story. It's so sad. But it's amazing all at the same time. Me and my friend read it in class one day and it touched us. It was just like we were you almost. But this is amazing. I love it. But we kinda of had a disagreement about if your mother died or not. We got into a big group discussion about it.I got the whole class to read it. Everyone loved it. Thanks for writing it.
life is to short! said...
Aug. 25, 2008 at 12:37 pm
i have also been through the same thing and i went through a lot and reading this article has even made proud to live and for my family life is to short and im glad kate that you and your family are closer now.
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