I went from a young, protected girl to adult overnight.

In August 2018, my grandfather passed away after two months of being sick. I didn’t get to say a proper goodbye. I didn’t get to tell him that I will remember all that he taught me. I didn’t get to tell him that every story he told me will be a new life lesson, that I will love and cherish people like he taught me to. I didn’t get to tell him I loved him.

In October 2018, my grandmother was diagnosed with cancer. For the past twenty years she has fought oral cancer. Since I was younger, I found her to be my role model. It is from her my sprit of never giving up comes from. But this time was different. This time, after twenty years with my grandfather by her side, she found herself alone. For the first time, I saw her vulnerable, and it killed me. So I tried to take the burden of my parents, help them out as much as I can. She got better. We all breathed a sigh of relief.

In December 2018, I found a lump under my dogs ear. That night I lost it. I lost my grandfather, almost lost my grandmother and now I night lose someone who has been there with my through all my problems with my mental health. My dog always put a smile on my face and even thinking of him in pain made me sad. He was in surgery the next day. It was followed by two weeks in recovery. The reports came back fine.

In February 2019, my grandmother, at the funeral of her elder brother, found a lump near her throat . We got it checked out immediately. Never in the 20 years she has had cancer has it spread from her mouth. It got serious. She began chemo and I had to watch her lose her hair and her confidence. I couldn’t even hug her, for me a carrier of the common cold couldn’t stay within close proximity of her weak immune system. It broke me.

What began from my grandfather’s death became my challenge. I went from coming home to two grandparents and two parents to no one. Between doctors appointments and work trips, I barely saw my parents. So, I stepped up. I did everything so they wouldn’t have to worry. I made sure there was something made for dinner and the my sister slept in time. I handled the house so that they could help my grandmother, and as much as all this broke me, it built me up into a stronger, smarter person.