This I Believe

Jonathan - Fayetteville, North Carolina
Entered on April 15, 2007
Age Group: 18 - 30
Themes: love
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Saying Goodbye

As time goes by, each and every one of us moves closer to death. This, I believe, is the reason I live life for the moment and make sure everyone I come in contact with knows that I have enjoyed spending time with them. A few months before my fifth birthday, my grandmother on my mother’s side of the family died of lung cancer as a result of her smoking habit. My first four years of life did not give me many memorable moments with her.

I don’t have many memories of me talking to her, walking with her, or even spending time with her. The one memory I have of my grandmother is that of her funeral and observing my mother cry over her mother’s grave. When I came of age, my mother enlightened me with the story of her mother’s violent battle with cancer and the toll that her unexpected death has had on her. She told me that death only seems real when you realize the last time you will ever see that person is when the door of the casket is shut over his or her cold, stiff body.

My mother used to pray night after night that God would send her mother back down so she could tell her how much she loved and missed her until in the midst of one of her loneliest nights she was awakened to see her mother standing beside her bed. It was all she could do to stand up, wrap her arms around her mother’s waist and tell her that she loved her. Since that night, my mother has had a peace about her mother’s death just knowing that she is in a better place waiting for the day God welcomes her daughter home.

Though this story is not my own, it has had a great effect on the way I live life and treat people. I have learned to live life for the moment knowing that every second that passes in resentment is a precious second wasted. I believe that you should never leave someone you care about with them doubting whether you have love in your heart for them. Showing that you care can make all the difference. This is the lesson my grandmother taught me after she left.