Carpe Diem

Jewels - Colton, California
Entered on December 3, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30
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As cliché as it sounds I really believe in carpe diem, which means “seize the day” in Latin. I know that many people use this as their motto, but to actually seize the day is very difficult to do. I personally do not know what it is like to truly be living my last day on earth, but I have seen first hand someone who has.

As an only child, I sometimes tend to take things for granted. My parents have always provided me with what I needed, and supported me in everything I have done. Until my best friend Kenny came into my life, I was jaded as to how easily life can change. Kenny is a very positive person with a big heart, he puts others before himself, and never complains about anything. He lives his life the way he wants to live it and never lets anyone or anything get him down, which is not easy to do when you have had a life like his.

Kenny has lost his brother, father, and two of his uncles. He is the last living male in his immediate family. When Kenny was thirteen, his older brother was killed in a car accident. The next year he lost both of his uncles to a rare type of cancer that is extremely hereditary and not traceable until it is terminal. When Kenny’s father was diagnosed with the same cancer a few years later he knew he only had a few months left to live. Although he put up a good fight, he passed away just four months after he was diagnosed. This chain of events devastated Kenny, especially when he learned that the odds of him getting cancer were not in his favor. One would think that Kenny would lose his spirit and think, “What’s the point? I will probably die young anyway”. Instead, he learned that life is too short. Rather than living his life holding grudges, being discouraged or unhappy, he lives his life to the fullest, never taking it for granted because he knows how easily it can end. I knew that people experienced sudden deaths, but it was not until being by Kenny’s side during his hardships that it became reality to me. One never knows what tomorrow may bring. Kenny has changed my whole perspective on life. He is always telling me to live life to the fullest, in whatever I do.

So that is why carpe diem is my new motto. I wake up every morning and tell myself to seize the day. I push myself to be the bigger person when someone tries bringing me down. So when someone cuts me off on the freeway, gives me a dirty look, or tries to hold me back, I always try to remember that life is too short to sweat the small stuff. I never know if I am living my last day so I try to make it count and seize it.