This I Believe

Daniel - Keene, New Hampshire
Entered on November 19, 2007
Age Group: 18 - 30

I believe in appreciation. Appreciation on any level is a fundamental gesture and emotion which is vested in all of us as human beings. I feel as though some parts of society today are widdled away with selfish ideas and actions; people worrying too much about what is in store for themselves and not the others who may be affected. Materialistic principles have taken the place of humanistic ones and monetary status has replaced charity and good deeds.

As a small child my birth mother died of cancer and I bounced between many Southern New England homes before I settled in with an aunt, uncle and two cousins in New Hampshire. This is my immediate family and although I knew the circumstances surrounding my life, I never considered this place anything but my real home. This meant that I loved and fought with this family my whole life like any typical child and teenager. I forged an up and down relationship with my mother, arguing about grades, work, and many simple things around the house but still I felt the most connected to her. My siblings would get annoyed at our arguments and say that we were too much alike, with my sharp tongue retorting that I was adopted.

I now sit at college and think every minute of the day about my mother who battles a rare and untreatable form of cancer. Her surgeries and radiation treatments have rendered her only a shell of my teenage-angst opponent and her eyes light up whenever I return home to visit her. I am left in shambles every time I see how much pain she is in. I want nothing more than to see her rise up and be able to live her life the way she used to.

I know that my mother will never be the same caring mother who, along with my father, took me into a home when I did not have one. She will never be the same mom who scolded me for hiding my report card from her, and she will never be the same mother who shared so many of the same ideals and characteristics as her adopted son. I now live my life hoping that she understands how much I appreciate everything which she has done for me. I worry every day that she may pass away wondering if I love her as much she loves me. I appreciate everything she has done for me so much that it hurts to think that I have not done enough for her. Appreciate what others have done for you, for appreciation is a far more forgiving and rewarding emotion than regret.