Taken for Granted
“Hey Taylor, come upstairs! Your dad bought you a bike!” I did not go upstairs. Instead, I continued to play with my videogame, unconcerned that my father had bought me a new bike. At the time, I guess the game was much more interesting than any bike my father could have bought for me; however, looking back on that now, I can never really grasp as to why I was so unthankful of my dad. He was possibly the greatest man I had ever come to know, and yet I was completely unaware. Maybe it was because I was a child, or maybe I just took things for granted. Either way, I will never be able to thank him now. After struggling for two years against colon cancer, my father passed away. I was only nine.
My father grew up in Tennessee, and had one other sister. After high school, he went to collage to become a doctor. Using his medical training, he joined the Air Force and went to Vietnam. He never saw combat, but he did spend his time saving lives and tending to the wounded on several bases. I guess he wanted to join the Air Force because his father, my grandfather, was an officer within the military during WWII. After Vietnam, my dad began a private practice within the medical world working as a hand and bone surgeon. He was married for sometime and had two daughters and a son, but later divorced. Then, sometime after that, he met my mother.
I was born on December 4, 1990, into a loving family, and was the youngest child, having four sisters and one brother much older than me. They were actually my half siblings, although it never seemed that way. Since my siblings were far older then me, some of them were already starting families of their own. Due to this, when we traveled, it was usually just my mother, my father, and myself. We would travel to my grandmother’s house in Tennessee every other weekend to visit, and we would also visit my father’s sister who had a brain tumor. After a few years, my grandmother became too old to be able to take care of herself, so my dad brought her back to Kansas with us. Sadly, a little while after bringing my grandmother back to Kansas, she died of old age, and a year after that, my aunt died of her illness. At that point, I had a slight grasp on the concept of death due to my grandmother and aunt both passing away; however, when my dad became ill, I had no idea that death was a possibility. Perhaps I was just too young to make the connection that my father was fighting a dangerous battle against a deadly disease.
When my father passed away, it left me in shock. He was the first person I had ever watched die, and being nine and it being my father, it hit me pretty hard. I remember I walked outside and sat down on the driveway as my neighbor rode up on his bike. I guess he could tell something was wrong because he asked if I was okay, and when I simply said, “My dad just died.” He just stood there, unable to say anything. Eight years later, and I can still feel the pain from that day. It affected me tremendously throughout my whole life, causing depression, anxiety, insomnia, and a strewn of other problems too. But I was not the only one affected by his death. Among my family, my mother was also hit really hard, understandably so. She had found her soul mate after years of searching, only to lose him years later to cancer.
Looking back, I wish I wouldn’t have taken things for granted. Knowing now how easy life can be taken away, I’ve developed a better sense of life overall. But still, I will always regret not playing catch when I could have, I will always regret not thanking him for when he gave me something I did not even ask for, and I will always regret for not spending as much time with him as I could have. However, my respect for my mother has grown over the years simply because of her willpower and strength to continue on despite what has happened, and to always lend me a helping hand throughout all of my problems. I cannot even begin to thank her enough for everything she has done for me. Without my mother, I would have given up a long time ago. Finally, although I may still have my own issues and problems, I’ve come to realize that life should not be taken for granted. From now on, I will always cherish and appreciate the loved ones around me, I will never take anything for granted, I will try to enjoy every day as much as possible, and I will live every day like it is my last, because you never know when your time might be up.
I don't like the end so much, seeing as how I make it seem like I'm happy or something, because that's far from the truth. It really only got worse after my dads passing; more people died, even some good friends, I was bullied a lot, life just really sucks sometimes.