I feel tears begin to distort my vision, and once again I blink them back.
“Help me with the dough, Alyssa”
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My mom’s words bring me back to reality, and I turn towards her only to realize that doughnuts are being rolled, shaped, and placed into a deep fryer.
Methodically, I help my mom, my brain not fully processing what my hands are doing. I feel myself drift into my own world again. Two months. That’s how fast cancer can spread its poison.
I can remember when this point was only a possibility. It seemed so far away. At first he was only sick again. When my mom began to take daily trips over to help, I knew it was more than that. It was the beginning of months of pain and fear. School seemed like a meaningless task, but I knew he would be disappointed if I didn’t try my hardest. Teachers became my best friends since I couldn’t ask my mom when she wasn’t home. My sister and I became closer, we both knew what was happening but we feared uttering the words would make hushed dinner conversations a reality.
Now we make doughnuts while he sits in the other room. How much time does he have left? Shouldn’t we be doing something more sentimental than baking? I want to run to him and talk to him, hear his voice for as long as possible, but he doesn’t have the energy and I don’t have the words. I stand in silence, I need to be strong for my mom, and more so, her mom. The most we can do for each other is be together.
Later, we take him on a walk and I see the sadness in his eyes as he looks at the familiar sights and sounds for possibly the last time. He holds my hand and occasionally asks me a question, I do my best to answer without my voice cracking.
My grandpa died one week after that day. He was in his home surrounded by the ones who loved him most. I wasn’t there for his last moments on earth, but I was there for his last moments with us. My family was devastated and so was I. Through all the tears and cries, I had no choice but to move on. Live my life hoping he’s proud of me. He taught me that life isn’t always fair but to keep fighting back no matter what.