The Odyssey

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The Odyssey

The Odyssey

Heart of the Family

When the heart of your family isn’t fully functioning, the ticking of the clock on the waiting room wall makes you reevaluate your entire existence. Getting through tough times in your life has many ups and downs. Sometimes it makes you mature faster, makes you stronger mentally and physically.  Getting through challenges can make you quiet down and not talk to people, making you feel all alone. No one likes bad news, especially the news that makes you feel lost and alone.

Sitting in the waiting room after days of crying and questioning “why him” because every girl needs her dad. As an eleven year old girl I needed my father and the thought of losing him brought me to a dark place where it felt like there was so much pressure on my heart it would stop, the airways from my lungs were closing where only the words I wanted to say stayed in my head making my voice shake. I remember my sister calling me telling me she was coming home from college which was weird because she only came down for holidays since she was five hours away from home. She told my brother and I that our dad was in critical condition from an unexpected heart incident and she wasn’t sure what was going to happen but he had been flown to Barnes Jewish Hospital for immediate care.

As my heart dropped and glass drops formed in my eyes I was in shock. I didn’t know what was going to happen. I only thought about the worse and all the negatives. I didn’t know who I would stay with because at the moment I wasn’t living with my mom and all of this was overwhelming.

My father was a healthy person. I couldn’t believe this had happened to him. Walking into a forest of wires, loud machines that were all connected to my dad, gave me the most gut wrenching feeling. I was convinced that I would lose my dad and thinking about what I would do when he was gone was even worse. It was difficult seeing someone you loved be in this bad of condition. 

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I spent many late nights in the hospital. My grades began to fall, I had no motivation and at that point I didn’t want to live a life without my dad. He was my biggest supporter and role model.

After I went into his room for one of the last times my father was lying there and hardly awake. He had enough energy to tell me that he was proud of me. For everything I have done, he then told me something that I think about quite often and has stuck with me and honestly is what got me through this mess of time and many other challenges.

His scratchy voice awoke and even with all the loud machines he told me  “Through all the hard times you have to believe in god, know he has everything in control. I will make it through it but I need you to do something for me, work hard, never give up, and don’t let anything get in your way.”

My dad has always been my best friend and even to this day he is my best friend. After my dad got out of the hospital he had a long recovery. He worried me because he could barely walk a couple of steps without being out of breath, he took tons of medicine and had to be watched carefully, so while I was at school voices scattered through my head only thinking about him. If he was pushing himself too hard I didn’t want him to end up back in the hospital. Doctors said they didn’t know how he was still alive but he pushed through it. 

My dad was the person to never give up on anything. I strive to be that person. The person who even when their life is falling apart they don’t let it get in the way of the important things and being successful. 

Today I look back at that moment when I spent weeks crying as my heart was shutting down trying to hide everything on the inside. I was just an eleven year old girl dealing with the heartache of almost losing my dad. While everyone doubted him and thought that their last moment with him would be in the hospital, I’m here still making memories and learning more lessons. 

I have had many challenges in my life everytime I look for a solution I think back to what my dad says of never giving up and always working hard. I use what he says often whether it be in sports when I’m losing confidence having to find the want in my heart, in school when I just can’t seem to find the motivation to get me through the assignment. Taking the role of being a leader “don’t let anything get in your way” stays at the top of my head. When being a leader there is always a problem you have to solve. His voice always pops up in my head telling me to keep going and I do. I push through to be the best person I can be.

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