Every Moment Counts

Samantha - Ephrata, Pennsylvania
Entered on October 29, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30

Every Moment Counts

I believe that there is a point in everyone’s life that causes him or her to realize that life is a fleeting gift. My epiphany came the summer before my freshman year in college.

I believe in the importance of every passing moment.

It was July and I was focused on making my summer break one that I would always remember. Then, suddenly and unexpectedly, my family and I received news that my aunt’s cancer was growing increasingly worse and that she was going to have to be put into Hospice Care. The events that followed caused that summer to be one that none of us would ever forget.

My aunt Sandy was only forty years old. What would little Jessica do without her mommy? How would my uncle take care of a family on his own? Some miracle had to be on its way.

The truth hit hard. We eventually got the call that Sandy had passed away. Thus we entered into the emotionally draining realization of what had just happened. We began to prepare ourselves for the viewing and funeral.

At the viewing, I walked through a tunnel of pictures of Sandy with our family and I realized just how precious life is. We don’t always have the amount of time that we would like.

The most shocking part of the experience was that in all of my sadness, the people who made the most effort to console me were her immediate family members. My uncle told me that he was so proud of me and that he wanted me to work hard in college. Sandy’s son Tyler gave me a hug and assured me that everything would be okay. Little Jessica squeezed my hand and told me that her mommy is in a better place now.

After much reflection, I understood how they were so at peace. Since Sandy lived her life with such grace and joy, her family was able to find comfort by remembering her life instead of focusing on losing her. Instead of crying, they were thinking of camping trips they had gone on as a family. They were remembering being at home and smelling one of Sandy’s famous apple pies and hearing her contagious laugh radiate through their house. Her ability to make the most of every situation would never be forgotten. Sandy’s used her life to make a difference.

It was at that moment that I could finally see the significance of living a life of integrity. Every single moment is a chance to show the world what I’m made of and my chances to do so are limited. My mission is to make the most of the time I’m given.