Taking Care of Pennies

Kathleen - Pearl River, New York
Entered on April 7, 2009
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: death, family, legacy
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My grandfather used to collect pennies. He had a little less than a thousand dollars of pennies, and some were really old. I never understood where you could get all those pennies. When I was very little I asked him why he collected all those pennies. He told me that, “You should take care of your pennies because then your dollars will take care of themselves.” This is what I have come to believe.

That day I began saving pennies in a jar. I always remembered what my grandpa said so I continued to keep all the pennies I received. Years went by and I still had only a small fraction of the pennies my grandpa had. Then, one day when I visited him he was very sick.

We found out later that he had lung cancer. Although, my grandpa was in a lot of pain never complained. He had the hardest challenge that anyone could have. My grandpa knew he was facing a life threatening disease, yet he always acted that he would get better overnight and be able to do many things with us the next day.

Well, my grandfather never got better; he died a half a year after he was diagnosed with lung cancer. I could not understand that he was always in pain because he never seemed upset. After his funeral I thought of his pennies. I thought of what he said to me once, “You should take care of your pennies because then your dollars can take care of themselves.”

He was right. Taking care of your pennies allows your dollars to take care of themselves. In other words, he meant you should work out the small problems you have in life because then the big problems will seem easy. My grandfather did exactly that. Everyday he would get up and do what he had to do. During his life he must have fixed the small problems he had. Therefore when he had lung cancer he was able to handle it.

From that moment on I have taken cared of my pennies so my dollars of would take care of themselves. I prepare myself for the little quizzes in school and life so when it comes to the big tests in life I will be able to handle it.