I believe that it often takes a major event in one’s life to realize that family and friends are one of the greatest blessings from above. As most people would say, I have no idea where I would be without my family. Of course, no family is perfect. I believe that it takes more than just your blood relatives to make an impact on your life. My best friends and their families matter just as much as if they were my own. These people have touched my life in more ways than I can imagine. They have shaped the young woman I am today, and their love and support continues to motivate me to achieve my dreams. However, you never realize how much you take for granted until that person is almost out of your life forever.
Until a month ago, I didn’t realize how much I appreciated my loved ones, especially my best friend, Chris. A couple of weeks ago, I received a terrible phone call from home that turned my life upside down. My best friend had gotten sick, and the doctors were keeping him in the intensive care unit. The doctors diagnosed him with congestive heart failure and kidney failure. His legs and arms were swollen, and body fluid surrounded his heart. His kidney could no longer function on their own so he had to depend on dialysis treatment’s until his kidneys started working again. He’s 21-years old, and it’s been almost a month and his kidneys still can’t function without dialysis.
When I first heard the news, I couldn’t do anything but cry. I was completely shocked, and at a loss for words. I kept questioning why, and I realized that despite the reason, I needed to be strong for him. When I finally got the opportunity to talk to him, he sat on the phone and he cried, and all I could do was hold in what I felt inside and promise that things would be okay. Honestly, I didn’t know whether things would ever be truly okay, but I strongly believe that nothing is impossible. Through faith and prayer, I believe that someday his body will function as it did before. That night, I felt his pain and his frustration, but I had to remain strong for him and his family. He told me, “you have to be strong for the both of us now.” It seemed like the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do, but in the end, I believe that it made our friendship as a whole stronger, and it reaffirmed the bond we’ve shared for years.
This is probably one of the most difficult times of his life, and I had to find the strength to be there for him, even though it killed me to know that his life will probably never be the same.
I believe that he will make it through, and I honestly believe that this event change my life forever. Life is too short, and I don’t want waste the time by taking it for granted. As horrible as this experience has been, I believe that God makes no mistakes, and that this has truly been wakeup call for the both of us. The expression “live life to the fullest” has a different meaning in my life. From this moment on, I will cherish our friendship and the moments I have with my family and friends, because tomorrow is never promised. This I believe.
If you enjoyed this essay, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to This I Believe, Inc.