This I Believe

Kaitlyn - wilbraham, Massachusetts
Entered on October 19, 2007
Age Group: Under 18

In all my 15 years of life, never had I learned so much about self-respect, being yourself, and treasuring everyone in your life. Before my dad met Karen, I didn’t really talk with my grandpa, or spend time with him. The most we ever said to each other was “Hi” or “Bye” and it was disturbing me. He was my grandpa, and I felt that we should be closer then we were. Then we moved into Ware right after Karen became my step mom. When we were in Ware we barely went out to Springfield; we moved a couple of times but always stayed in the premises of Ware. About two years went by, and we went into Springfield about 15 times all together. Then my dad got the news that grandpa was sick, and told us that we would be spending more time in Springfield. So every weekend that Nick and I were with our dad, we were in Springfield, visiting grandpa. While in Springfield, I still couldn’t, even look at him. For some reason, I was afraid that if I looked at him then, he would somehow get worse. It wasn’t until he was put into the hospital that I knew what I had to do.

The day, grandpa was admitted to the hospital, my dad tried to tell us that it was for the better, and that grandpa was going to get better. I heard the sadness and doubt in my dad’s voice, and knew that he wasn’t going to survive. So that night, I asked my mom if I could go visit him everyday, because I didn’t know how much longer my grandpa was going to fight it. She said I could, so just about everyday for a month, I became a hospital regular. We would play cards, watch movies, and sometimes we wouldn’t say or do something, just my presence was enough.

Last March, my grandpa died. Although it wasn’t unexpected, we were all deeply hurt. In trying to be strong for grandma, we didn’t see what we were being taught. That month, I learned the most important thing, that I feel I could ever learn; I was taught (the hard way) that not everyone is going to be there for me all my life, family pass away, and friends go away. This is why I believe that you have to treasure every moment with someone, because one day they can walk away, and you’ll never see them again.