I believe in hating the year 2008, but most especially Thursdays. Throughout my sixteen years of existence, death had not utterly damaged me until a few Thursdays in 2008.
First I lost my dog. For most people this seems insignificant. A dog is just an animal right? Wrong. Being an only child my animals are part of my family. They are like the siblings I never had. When I was little I talked to them like they could understand me. They were waiting for me at the front door when I got home from school. Then life stopped in an instant when I learned my dog had cancer. I would never wish what happened to me, my dog, or my family upon anyone. To see a creature that I loved whole-heartedly, which isn’t something I do often, lay on the ground because she couldn’t move tore at my very being. Slowly Bailey stopped eating, drinking, and walking. Selfishly my family and I would carry her wherever she needed to go just to have her for another day. She wasted away in front of my eyes in a matter of a week. I was dismissed from school on a Thursday to go be by her side when we brought her to the vet. Part of me has never left the room she will never leave herself.
Life was tough, but I survived. Then my eight-month old cousin who was born with a heart defect went downhill fast. After being home for only two weeks, she was rushed back to the hospital. Gwen was diagnosed with a “virus.” The doctors informed us there was nothing they could do anymore. She had gone into cardiac arrest. I have never prayed so much to a God that I’m not sure I even believe in. I said goodbye to her on a Wednesday. On Thursday, my birthday, she passed away. To be brutally honest, my family has been ripped apart and will never truly recover.
Then I learned my grandmother was diagnosed with lung cancer. It was a Monday. She would be going in for surgery on a Thursday. I don’t know if I can handle another funeral. Another numb day, only feeling when my heart drops at the words “Can you please dismiss…” knowing that something is tragically wrong. Another lie so that I don’t have to be “that” girl. The girl who knows just from the tone of voice another earth shattering curveball is about to be thrown my way. I don’t think I can deal with another day that I fight every minute to keep tears from spilling out or another class where I have to tune out so I don’t hear the teacher talking about death and loss because I might lose it. So I whole heartedly hate Thursdays for turning me into a shadow of myself who is afraid to go home because I don’t want to see the visible sorrow in my families’ faces. I believe in hating 2008.
If you enjoyed this essay, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to This I Believe, Inc.