This I Believe

Chelsey - Norman, Oklahoma
Entered on February 4, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30
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“Not A Reason To Fail”

I believe in moving on and living despite the daily challenges life throws my way.

At eleven years old, I could not have been more of a mama’s girl. People said that we must have been attached at the hip because they never saw one of us without the other. She was my best friend. She was the type of person that people could not help but love. I was privileged to have such a great upbringing and such a wonderful mother. However, the old saying, “What goes up must come down” definitely holds true in my story.

In the spring of my fifth grade year my mother was diagnosed with a rare form of leukemia. She went to the doctor because she felt like she had the flu. The doctor did some tests to make sure it was not serious, and scheduled her in later that week. When she returned, the doctor said that she had the highest white blood count he had seen, and she needed to be hospitalized. Her treatment began the next day. With each day of treatment our fear and lack of understanding of the disease became more and more evident.

I finished out my fifth grade year with weekly visits to the blood center. Mom got blood transfusions a few times a week and I always went. Eventually the time came for her first round of chemotherapy, which meant hospitalization. After school ended, I moved into the hospital with her. I slept there, bathed there, and ate there. I stayed with her all summer long, talking, laughing, and crying.

I learned a great deal about her that summer. Her faith in the Lord and Love for Jesus Christ grew by leaps and bounds that summer. She would comfort those who came to see her with scriptures she came across that inspired her. In a time when she should have been devastated she kept us all strong.

At the end of the summer we were told that the chemotherapy and radiation treatments were unsuccessful and she needed a bone marrow transplant. So, we packed up our lives and moved to Baylor, Tx. for the transplant. Living at Baylor showed us how cruel life could be. After several long months of being kept in the dark our hope was diminished. The transplant was unsuccessful.

I did not know at the time, but the doctor had given my mom two weeks to live. We should have known that she did not even have that long due to how fast he tried to send us away. She lived for four days after we returned. We got home on Thursday 7, of December and she died that following Monday December 11.

Even though many people would shut down and stop living in my situation, I actually became a better person because of my loss. I do not think I would be who I am today without my experience. I believe that you can’t use tragedy as an excuse to fail, or stop trying. You have to try harder in spite of it. Everyone has their own free will to do and feel however they decide to. In my experience I’ve found that success is the best form of closure a person could have.