An Unfortunate Realization
A few times in my life I have heard or witnessed people after the death of a loved one say, “I wish I could spend just one more minute with him (or her).” I never really understood or believed that one more minute with someone could make much of a difference. That is, until my grandfather died. Now I understand that every second spent with loved ones is priceless.
Throughout my grandfather’s fight with cancer, he spent days or even weeks at the hospital. There were rare occasions when my family would hear ill news of his condition and had to drive an hour and a half to get to the hospital. He fought through these instances until the end, but at the time, I did not know if he would live or not. In near silence, I would sit in the hospital room, watching and praying that he would live just a little longer. It is difficult to recollect my feelings during that time due to the turmoil it arouses in my mind, but I can easily remember my desperate prayers and thoughts about what it was like for the rest of my family. If it was that hard for me, what could they be going through?
My grandfather was a great man, and I enjoyed every moment I had with him. On September 30, 2006, which was the day after my birthday, he passed away in his sleep at his home in rural Kentucky. I found myself wishing that I had that proverbial last minute to spend with him, and I am sure everyone else in my family did as well. After that day, I could finally relate to the phrase and was forced to accept the fact that I could not get what I wanted. I had to believe he was somewhere better and that I would see him again someday. Perhaps that helps me get past the mourning, which continues to this day every time I think of my grandfather.
I hope as I grow older I will acquire the same personality, character, and other qualities of my grandfather and live my life as he lived his. If I could have had just one more minute with my grandfather, I don’t know what I would have said or done, but I do know it would have been worth it. This I believe.
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