How did 19 years end up flying by so fast? How did my family become people I barely talk to anymore?
How come nobody taught us that losing a person in our lives would flip our world upside down?
As a child, we are under the notion that tragic things like these won't ever happen. We believe everyone in our lives will be here forever, and we think families are always bound to stay together.
We believe life is always going to be sunshine and rainbows, and we think we are always going to be young.
Life is the least bit like what we thought of as a kid. We all were dying to grow up and do things adults can do.
We bypass those good birthdays, the good memories trying to achieve the age we actually wanted to be.
We take our parents for granted because we wanted to spend more time at parties, sleepovers with friends every night, arguing because you didn't like the answer they gave you. You fight with your siblings because why not, and you spend your childhood wishing it was something different.
I am beyond fortunate and blessed to have had such an amazing childhood where love was always there, support was never not a thing, family vacations down the shore every summer were mandatory, zoos, aquariums, basically anything, we did it. My parents were true gems, and they always made sure to get us involved in community activities.
We were surrounded by family all the time. My cousins used to be my absolute best friends, my grandparents filled our stomachs and created a loving, safe environment for us, my aunts and uncles planned sleepovers so we all could hangout and we all celebrated every birthday and holiday together.
Life has changed since childhood.
Those Sunday dinners at Nan and Pop's house are non-existent. The house we all pretty much grew up in is just sitting there. My grandparents' house was a house I spent most of my time: whether it be swimming, playdates, sledding down the little hill during the snowy season, birthday parties, wiffle ball games in the front yard, shooting pool or playing darts.
I thank my grandparents a ton for being big parts of my life growing up, and I'm beyond blessed for getting to have them in my life for so long.
But, the laughter, the love and the safe haven is now just gone.
The house is just a house sitting on a piece of land, the sadness flows driving by or stopping for a minute. As a child, we thought they were going to be here forever, but unfortunately, they're not.
Life changes as we grow up. Families move away, your cousins are living life, your cousins go off to college in different cities and states, your cousins have big people jobs and sometimes, the only communication you get with them is through a text message.
Sometimes, holidays and birthdays aren't spent together anymore. Sometimes, home isn't home anymore, and most of the time, those moments are now just memories.
In life we take a lot of things for granted, including our parents. If I could, I would go back and not say all those hateful things, I would take their word for things and not argue with them about it, I would not be a teenage brat, I would be a little more considerate of their emotions and feelings and maybe, spend a little more time at home with them.
I am totally guilty of being a nasty, selfish kid growing up. I was spoiled, and I thought I was entitled. I would do anything in this world if I could get one last moment with my Dad, but unfortunately, life isn't about that.
Always remember, while you're growing up, they're growing old. Not everyone will be here for a lifetime, and that includes your parents.
There are so many things in life I wish I would have cherished a little more, so many things I wish I would have said, so many things I would have never took for granted.
Life isn't sunshine and rainbows at all, it's a rollercoaster of things. Live off those memories, and don't forget about those people who made you, you.
At this moment in your life right now, in 10 years from now, it is going to be a memory you go back too. Cherish those people in your life you love, always say "I love you," be grateful and beyond blessed.