Saturday, December 11, 2010

* Embrace Life *

Background info:
  • My grandma's mental health has been slowly regressing these past couple of years. She's currently only functioning at the most fundamental level of living. She has two 24 hour nurses that care and assist her with everyday routines. She also either refuses to speak or has a mental block that she can't break through in order to talk sometimes.

Memory:

[I was about 3 or 4 years old. My grandparents had come to visit and we took them to Manhattan Beach. We passed by some cotton candy and being a true kid, I really really wanted some. My parents flat out refused to get me any. I remember there being a lot of tears, like big ol' crocodile tears. And then through all the sobbing, my grandma took me into her arms and comforted me as she wiped away my tears. She took me on a walk and the next thing I knew, there was a big wad of cotton pink fluff in my chubby little hands and the world was right again. That was the kind of grandma she was.]


Day 2:

After every meal, I sit with my grandparents in the living room as they watch tv. Today was no different. I took a seat next my grandma and watched her as she looked blankly ahead. I try calling her name and asking her simple questions to elicit some sort of response from her. Nothing. I ask her what my name was and if she remembered me. She turns her head to look at me and only blinks. There's no recognition of me written anywhere on her face. She has her on and off days in which sometimes she'll smile or respond with a yes or no. However, today was an off day.

I reach out and hold her tiny fragile hands. I give them a soft squeeze and truly realized that my grandma is only a shell of who she once was. A wave of saddness overcame me at that moment. And before I knew it, I started to tear up .. just like that same little girl who couldn't have her cotton candy. But this time around, my grandma can't be the one to wipe away the tears for me. Instead she looks over at me.

Like a big girl, I blink back my tears and give her a big smile. Cotton candy or no cotton candy, I love my grandma and today, I told her so.


Thoughts:

Every day things are changing whether it be for the better or the worse. If you don't stop to enjoy the moments right now with the people you love the most, life will just pass you by. Because once things are gone, they're gone. Tell your parents you love them. Say your sorries now. Use up your saved up vacation days and travel like you've always wanted. Be brave and finally ask out that girl you've been admiring.

Because at the very end of the day, what do you have to lose?

Embrace life ... now.

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