Take Chances

Jordan - Solon, Ohio
Entered on January 14, 2009
Age Group: Under 18

It seemed like the perfect day to visit my grandmother. The sun warmed up the earth, not a cloud in sight, and spring break left me with no school. A day almost as perfect as the day you get your first puppy. Maybe it was all too good to be true.

It was a Saturday afternoon. My parents pleasantly took me to Menorah Park in Beachwood for all of us to spend time with my grandma. “It is such a wonderful day,” my grandma told us when we arrived. “Shall we go outside to visit?” It’s certainly better than staying in those ratty old cubicles nurses call luxury rooms. So we did. Everything was starting to get a lot better. Maybe Grandma was starting to accept Grandpa’s death, a few months ago.

The visit unfortunately came to an end. We slowly brought Grandma up to her room and left. Usually, when I see my grandmother, I hug and kiss her goodbye. On that beautiful day, however, I did not. I thought, I’m just going to see her again in a couple of days on Monday, so she’ll understand.

Finally, we arrived home. Just as we strolled through the door, I heard this blaring noise coming from the phone. My father answered it quickly and suddenly, all this sunlight on this beautiful day turned into sorrow and agony. It was a feeling I haven’t felt since Grandpa died. A feeling that is as bad as the reaction on your face when your parents tell you your puppy died or ran away. A feeling just from this one phone call. Just from two words. Not just any two words, but two words that cause everything in life to stop working. These hateful two words poured out of my father’s mouth.

“She’s dying.”

My dad sprinted back to Beachwood, but it was too late. My grandmother died. Was something wrong with me because nothing came out of me. No tears, no words, nothing, just a blank stare into an empty vacuum. I saw a déj– vu from when my grandpa died. A horrible, never ending replay. A broken record trapped in my mind.

I know everyone has regrets and makes mistakes, but that’s life. So even though I do regret not giving a proper goodbye to my grandmother, I don’t dwell on it. I know she is looking at me from above and is proud of me. And I think that’s the only thing that truly matters.

So this is what I tell people: take every chance that’s in front of you. Don’t assume that just because it’s such a brilliant day, things won’t go badly. Take the opportunities. Take the risks.

This is what I believe in.