I Believe in Family

Kelsee - Missoula, Montana
Entered on December 3, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30
Themes: family

When my Grandfather was diagnosed in the summer of 2007 with pancreatic cancer, it felt like a huge piece of my family was being ripped away from me. It isn’t until someone has only a few months left, that you realize how important to you that person is. I realized this with my Grandfathers diagnoses. I also hadn’t realized how close my family was until the diagnoses was confirmed. I had taken for granted that my grandfather would always be around. I think we all did.

For me it was painful to watch my Grandfather waste away. Grandpa was too weak for chemotherapy, and would not have lived through surgery. The doctors told us the best thing for him was quality of life. Knowing the he was going to die made it almost harder to see him, but I knew that I needed to take advantage of every chance I got to visit him. I wish now that I would have had more time then I did to get to know my Grandpa, but I wouldn’t trade the memories I have with him for anything.

After my Grandfather died it brought by family together, but it also separated us at the same time. Tensions were brought to a new level during the last few weeks of my Grandfathers life and after the funeral. My Aunt was continually trying to tell my Grandmother what she should do and how to do it. Things between my Aunt and my Grandma became strained and led to them not speaking to each other. As the week after my grandfathers death went on my Aunt became more pushy and controlling. It took them several months to reconcile. But even with this tension, we were all able to help each other out through this hard time.

I try to keep my family as close to me as I can. I feel like we have definitely come closer together after my grandfathers’ death. My family as a whole has put forth more of and effort to get together and have family time. I have learned that you can’t wait till the end to spend time with the ones that you love. You need to take advantage of all the time you can to spend together with your family. I know that I wish I had more memories with my Grandfather. But the memories that I do have I hold close to my heart.