Anything Good Takes Time

A couple of days ago I had to write my first paper of the semester.
The prompt stated that we’d right about an event in our lives that changed our attitude and character forever.
I automatically thought of my mom, but I knew her death wasn’t the only thing that changed me I had already been changed before that.
It started with the day that I found out she had cancer. I realized I had not relived that memory since it happened and boy was it hard!
But it was almost therapeutic and I wanted to share it with my readers!


I have lived a very difficult life. I am the oldest of four who were raised by a
single mother. I had to grow up a lot quicker then most kids my age in order to help out my mom. I don’t remember many fun childhood memories. Most of
them are moments of financial struggle and stress. I was raised by a warrior,
someone who thought me to never give up and to be a positive person. Thanks
to her I always tried to make the most of everything and see the positive in them. My struggles made me the strong person that I am today but it also made me very paranoid to fail in life. As I grew up I became obsessed in succeeding and I was very hard on my self when something did not go as planned. At age twenty two I had already had some set backs on my plan with my education and future career. I was very disappointed in myself yet I was determined to keep pushing and not let anything else stand in my way. I had my mind set and I could not allow anything to make me deviate from my plan!
It was on a Monday afternoon I was at my boyfriends aunt’s memorial service
reception. I was sitting on a table surrounded by his siblings as we all ate our food in silence because non of us could believe she was really gone. I was full of mixed emotions myself as I kept looking at my phone since my mom had been in the hospital for three days with a very bad case of pneumonia. I was waiting for her call because on that day she was getting her final results of all the test they ran and was planning to check out the following morning. I remember taking one more glance at my phone as a text message came in. It said “They said yes”, I replied to her “Yes to what? Is everything okay?” I waited for what seemed the longest five minutes of my life yet no reply. I got up and excused myself from the table as I walked to a quitter area in the salon. I called her three times but she would not answer, I was starting to freak out. I could feel it, something in my heart was telling me that she was not okay. I was nervous, I felt as if the room got very hot and I could feel my face and neck starting to sweat. My phone finally rang and as I answered it my hands were shacking so much that I could barely press the answer button. As I said “Hello” I heard her say “You are the
first person I call, but I need you to stay calm and please do not cry.” Had she
not added the last part I might have stayed strong a little longer but I could feel the tears running down my face on to my chin. She said again “Kelsey? Do you hear me? Please try not to cry” I said to her “Mom what’s wrong? Just tell me already!” She knew I was crying and she said to me as she began to cry “No, no, no, please I told you not to cry! There was a pause and then she said “I have Lung Cancer.” I could not believe what I was hearing. I broke down as I grabbed the bottom of my dress and squeezed my hand into a fist. I could barely breath and speak but I forced out the words and said to her “Is it bad? Is it curable? Are you going to die?” I could hear her begin to also gasp for air as she cried louder and said “ Yes, no unfortunately, eventually but it can take a long time” I felt as if my heart had been ripped from my chest and all I could say was “No! No! No! No! No! No! Why you? Why god? Why her?” We cried on the phone together till my boyfriend walked over and looked at me with confusion. He said to me, “Is
everything okay?” She heard him and it seemed like she was almost trying to
calm her self down hoping he would not hear cry. She said to me “Listen up, you and I both know God only gives his toughest battles to his strongest soldiers. Everything is going to be okay. Only he knows what he is doing so calm downand try to be positive like I have always thought you to be. I need you to call my sisters and brothers because they have been calling me non stop and I do not wish to go through this again. I am going to get some rest and I’ll see you when you get here. I love you Kelsey remember that everything is going to be okay!” I
don’t remember if I even responded to her after that, I just remember hanging up the phone and telling my boyfriend with a loud cry as I hugged him tightly “My mom has Lung Cancer” I broke down I could not be strong anymore. By the time I looked up his immediate family was there to comfort me. I cried and cried as I was passed from one person to another. His mom hugged me, his dad hugged me, his sisters and finally his grandmother. I felt myself weak in the knees as I hugged the lady who had just buried her third child who had died from cancer. She said to me “I am so sorry honey, I do not know what to say. No one and I mean no one deserves to feel this pain.” I could hear everyone around me crying but it was almost like I was running low on tears. Something in his grandmother’s hug gave me strength and helped me calm down. I wiped my tears off my face and started to call my aunts and uncles before I left the reception and drove to the hospital to see my mom. After that day I was no longer worried about success, failure or if my life worked
out as planned or not. I had mixed emotions on the whole cancer fact and I could still not believe it was true. I went from going to church every Sunday to not going at all and not even blessing myself every morning as I woke up or every night before I went to bed like I use to. This lasted about a year. I went to school and finished my AA Degree but I was not very motivated. I was angry, disappointed and still very confused as to why this diseases had made it’s way into our lives. Eventually I started to go back to church along side with my mom and even though I was still confused I was no longer angry. I had a small break
from school as I took care of her and we fought this disease side by side. I was no longer worried of how long it would take me to finish or when I would start working in the field of my planned carrier. We helped each other through it and like always she was strong and positive making it hard for me not to follow her lead. Five months ago today my mother passed away at the age of forty six. She left four children and a granddaughter behind to live on her legacy. But most of all she left a changed and even stronger daughter who promised her she would not stop until she achieved everything she ever wanted in this life. Even though my mothers sickness and death have been the hardest experienced I have ever lived through, I know that it has made me stronger and changed my perspective on life. I have learned that it is okay to deviate from a plan. I learned that even the most perfect plans could fall apart and that I must not dwell and stress on it too much. I learned anything good takes time. I learned it does not matter how long it takes me to accomplish my dreams as long as I do not give up and keep pushing forward. I now realized money and good fortune is not as important as it perceives. Living life as if it’s your last day is whats important.

The Daughter of a warrior;

I am a Single Mother


In only a couple of days it will be 5 months since my mom has passed. I miss her like crazy everyday and every minute. I wish I could still come home and see her face and hear her voice but I can’t.
I was hoping that since she’d passed I’d be able to avoid hospitals for a while. However I’ve been to three different one’s since. Methodist our near home hospital which I am already familiar with because my mom spend 2 years in and out of there. Huntington Hospital in Pasadena where my sister ended up after being hit by a car (yes unfortunately the bitch is still running loose, I don’t know what is taking so long). Then there is also The children’s hospital of Los Angeles where I now know my way around because my brother has been here since Sunday. If any of you readers care, we are ALL OKAY no need to worry.
I still wish we had never made it to these places anyway. Everything about hospitals creeps me out now. The hallways, elivators, the beds, and the cold feeling you get no matter the temperature outside (102° by the way) and of course that sad feeling you get that you are not here for your mom anymore. It sounds crazy but it’s almost like my body and heart get this hope that they might see her again for a couple of minutes until my mind has to calm it down and say “sorry but she will not be here”.
What really brought me back to reality was when I was filling out the forms for my brothers admittion into the hospital and the man asked me “Are you a single mother or are you married?”
I answered with confusion on my face…
“Ummm, I am his sister”
and he said to me…
“Well of course, but the mother is deceased now and you are his guardian so are you a single mother or are you married?”
And with an empty feeling in my heart I answered “I am a single mother”
I walked out of there almost devistated. Not because I was raising my siblings or anything but because I never thought of it that way, until him. I was now something I never wanted to be. I was now a “Single Mother”. I knew it wasn’t by choice but I began to sort of freak out thinking of all I struggled along  side of my single mother and wondered what would happen if I’d also fall in the future causing my siblings to struggle too?
I never could had imagined my life like this, I had a plan and it was destroyed and re written for me. And even though it saddened me and stressed me a lot I told myself as I walked back into my brothers hospital room, “You are a single mother now! Who was raised by one of the warriors of single mothers… You can do this!”
I went from negative to positive in only seconds but my brain was again smacking me out of it saying…
“You got this!”

Feeling positive and trying to stay strong;

My 40 days…


It’s been exactly 40 days since my mom passed away.
And the craziest and most overwhelming 40 days off my life.
They say that in other countries like our cultural country and where our family comes from (Zacatecas, Mexico) you morn and don’t do anything at all for the first 40 days. You don’t work, listen to music or watch TV, and you don’t go out much unless it’s needed. You take those days to cry, love your family and those around you and help each other find peace again.
Unfortunately in America, life must go on weather we like it or not…
In my life it started from the night she died…
We started a nine day rosarie which is about an hour long but the food and chatter makes people stay for like 3 hours. It then went to all the people that surronded me asking if I needed anything or giving their condolences, to all the family at our house with total different personalities causing them to argue and what not about their different views on everything, to my grandma asking me every night “Why was I creamating my mom for it is not the CATHOLIC thing to do.”
Then after those two weeks, I was left all alone with the boys making me kind of miss all the comotion.
Then our own comotion started up again as I heard them cry, scream, fight and I even got the whole “You are not my mom” card from my youngest brother and the older one tried to pull the “I am running away” card.
And all along I had to deal with my own emotions on top of it all and people… lot’s of people! As well as all the crazy paper work that comes a long with the death of someone. From taking c.ustody, to bills, the housing arrangement and closing down any accounts of her’s and so on.
It all can get very overwhelming but it also can make you realize that life goes on. That not just because you wish to pause and freeze for a little to take a breath means that everyone else will stop with you… sadly in that sense you are on your own.
Anyway back to the people, oh the people there is friends of my own, my mom’s close friends, our family and all the fake nosey people who want to know just how you are going to do it all on your own.  Either way everyone worries about you, they all stress for you, some of them making you feel bad because you can’t cure their sadness and you almost feel like you have to help them.
And of course there is work and school and just flat out LIFE.
Then there is the quite moments, from the minute you wake up and realize it is all real or that minute right before you go to bed when it all hits you the hardest.

I have to admit even though those are the times I am the most sad, they are also my most favorite times of all.

And on top of it ALL, I have felt nothing but guilt, and anger because I couldn’t help my mommy any further to help her get better. I thought that if I was good, if I listened to the doctors, if I followed all the rules, maybe we can turn this thing around… just maybe she’ll get better!

But she didn’t, and fourthy days later on top of all the comotion it still sucks that I have to do all of this with out her here.
She is the reason for my sadness and weakness as well as what keeps me pushing.

Missing my Best Friend,

Cancer Defeated my Best Friend👭

“She is clothed in Strength and Dignity…”


Diagnosed with Lung Cancer Stage 4 in December 2012


They predicted she had already had it for over 6 years. She had two chemo therapies  that were a success and she took them like a champ.


She was doing great, the cancer couldn’t be cured but the doctors had hope and we had faith to have her with us for a long time.


Then out of no where the cancer got more aggressive and began to attack her at her hips and tail bone. Therefor they started radiation, this treatment is probably what lead her closer to heaven. It left her with these painful soars on her bottom that caused her to not be able to sit much anymore with out being in pain.


The radiation brought her down to 88 pounds. She couldn’t breath much anymore so she had a tub inserted in her lung so that she could have the liquid drained every two days. This is when I saw my mom as weak as I had ever seen her she couldn’t do anything on her own and I could tell she was frustrated. I felt so helpless even though I was taking full care of her because my mom had been robbed for her independence, she never wanted anyone to have to take care of her. She was the one taking care of others and she hated depending on my help but I did it with all the love I have for her.


She was so tired of the cancer that she hated being in the hospital and all the meds would just make her asleep.


In early March a scan showed that the cancer was now at the liver and in her head. She then made a decision to leave it all in the hands of god. They told us that the radiation could kill her soon if they kept going or pro-long her life anywhere from 6 months to a year but they couldn’t say till they tried. The doctors told us there wasn’t anything else they could do. She decided she had enough and she told me “I’m sorry to let you down mija, but I don’t want to die like this. I can’t eat, I can’t sleep or even enjoy the last I have with you guys. I rather live 10 days happy and eating whatever I want and laughing and enjoying time with my kids who I love so much then 3 months in a bed living in pain and weak.”


As much as it hurt, I supported her. I accepted her decision and I begged god to please let her live long with this deadly disease. I refused to accept that the cancer was winning, I couldn’t accept that she was loosing.

She was doing so good for about a month and a half.


On Saturday April 19th my mom had a wonderful morning…
She was really excited for the ceremony at church later that night, she had been looking forward to it for the past two years. At noon that day my mom began to shut down. It was the day that her boys would finally get Babtized as she so much wished and they would finish all of their sacraments but she was too weak to make it to the ceremony.


We were hoping she would snap out of it again. I was hoping she would wake up and be okay…

But it only got worse. She went from eyes open to eyes close for good. She cried when we spoke to her and she moned to respond. Then moaning stopped by Monday morning and the breathing got harder.


I was praying to god that he’d please wake her up. I needed a miracle! I asked that he’d show me his existence and that he’d prove to me that all my faith I put in him mattered and prayers had been heard.


My siblings and I needed our mom, our only parent. The worrier who defeated every obstacles that came our way. The lady who never gave up, and seemed like she could do anything. The one who never got a break but never stopped working hard to raise us right and made sure that we always had everything we needed.

I refused to believe that God would leave me on the hang like this, why would he take my mother, my only parent and my best friend from me? From us? Knowing how much we needed her.

Then on Tuesday April 22nd, 2014 at 11:50pm my mom took her last breath as she finally opened her eyes again looking at everyone in the room one last time as tears fell down her eyes.


She fought as hard as she could and had such a big spirit and strong faith in god.
She told me she wasn’t afraid to die, but she knew she wasn’t ready to go yet.
Unfortunately this life we are living is just temporary and it can be over in seconds. I know my mom has gone to heaven, I believe this world is like a test and once you pass it god opens the gates to his kingdom. That is why he takes the people we see as the “good one’s” first. He doesn’t take them to be mean to us or to hurt us he takes them because they are the “good one’s” for a reason. They have finally passed and are ready to graduate to go where we all wish to be someday.

I have to say he is one lucky man, because my lord has gained a beautiful and very unique angle.





          R.I.P Maricela Arellano Lopez
       July 12th, 1967- April 22nd, 2014

Until we meet again momma…

Your Best Friend;
Kelsey Barillas

Do not negotiate with him…

The day after my mom had the “tamales” talk with me, she made the decision to put a stop to all treatment. They had just finished radiation in the body parts that had been first exposed and they were getting ready to start on the head. Since the radiation started she couldn’t eat, poop, or function properly. She was officially sick, she looked sick and excuse my mouth but she also felt like shit. We went to her doctors appointment that morning and after the check up, questions and small talk she told the doctor; “I want to stop, I can’t do it any more.” In shock the doctor just said “I know its hard, and I understand but it’s now in your head?” And she replied to him… “I know but that is okay, I want to leave my life in the hands of god. I’m really sick doctor and I rather spend 10 good days being able to function with my kids and spend those last days happy with them then 30 in a bed where I can’t even stand myself.” In that moment I felt like she was already dying. After the talk of the night before and now this it felt like this was it. I cried and I cried, asking god; “Please, please let me have her a little longer”
The next day, we were at our house talking with a friend that came by and she had said “That’s right Maricela! Only the lord knows when he will be ready for us” Thinking out loud I said “I just hope he leaves her a little while longer…”
and then she told me; “Don’t negotiate with him! Don’t ask him please god one more month? Year? Two or Three?”
I said… “I know but I don’t want to ask for too much?”

and she told me “Nothing is too much for our lord, miracles do exist and as long as you talk to him and ask him he’ll listen, tell him not to take her yet. Tell him I understand you need her but I need her too and I want her here with me for a much longer time!”

In that moment I realized she was right? Why was I telling god “Please let me have her for a little longer” when truly I wanted her here for a long long time!


and in that moment I realized she was right… so that night I told him and begged him to please make her feel better. I asked him to please let me have her for a really long time and please please cure her god, if you are up there and can hear me, please cure my mom lord, please.

With a stronger faith then yesterday,

“And don’t forget you have to keep making my Tamales”

I haven’t blogged in a while, I just haven’t had much energy for anything. I guess you can say I been a little emo but it’s just so hard to be positive all the time when you see your hero, the queen of your world and your best friend not doing so well. My momma has a lot going on with this dam Cancer that has begun to rapidly spread. She was in the hospital last week and even though they did a couple of things that have really helped her, the doctors have now gave us that “any day now… you must be ready…” talk. And I am mad again, a bit mad with God because a part of me wants to blame him. A bit mad that I can’t do anything to heel her, and a bit mad that her time could come any time soon and it’s just flat out not fair!
I mean it just makes no sense, why would my lord take the only parent I’ve ever had, the one that’s always been here for me, my best friend!
Does he not know I still need her?
We all still need her? My youngest brother is only 11! Does she not get to meet his first girlfriend? Or see either of her boys graduate high school?
Who in this world is going to walk me down the aisle someday? I have a wonderful godfather and uncles but no one would make me as happy as she would if I had her by my side! What about my graduation? One of her dreams is to see me graduate from college!?
And what about my kids? Why does only Audrina (my niece) get to meet her awesome grandma? And also why doesn’t my mom get to stick around to see Audrina grow?

And most of all! She isn’t even ready to go! She has told me that she told god her self “I am not afraid or anything but I’m not ready to die yet”

So my question is WHY, WHY and WHY???

None of it makes sense and I have realized that dwelling on it won’t change things. I mean do I wish god would answer my prayers and send me a miracle? Well yes of course. But I need to try really, really hard to not dwell. It’s making me angry and grouchy and I always have a headache now in days and that’s not good!
My mom was freaking me out a bit yesterday because she wasn’t looking so good. She just started radiation on her head, she has these big soars and burns on her butt from the radiation on her tail bone that hurt so much that she can’t even poop comfortably. She weighs 88 pounds and they come in every other day to drain the liquid from her lung that leaves her in so much pain! She said it feels like she is getting her heart and lungs sucked out, because it’s like a little vacuum.
So in pain and all she began to talk to me last night, it was almost like she was saying good bye but not exactly she spoke to me about what she wants to take care of and begin to prepare. She told me she wants to be creamated even if it’s not really the “Catholic” thing to do. She told me what she wanted me to tell her siblings the ones she won’t get to see before she goes (there is 16 of them). Then she began to tell me how she would want us to live our life with out her. She told me to always take care of her boys and try not to fight with them no matter how annoying and messy they are… “If you speak to them nicely and calm they will help you” She said she was really sorry for leaving me all the baggage, but that she felt I was the only one who could handle it because no matter how much of a cry baby I am… “You are just like me, my strength will live on, in you” She told me to live my life and follow my heart, she said “I see the way Chris looks at you and he loves you but no matter what always make sure YOU are happy with your life, don’t just cruise through life until you die, make sure to live! Make sure to love deeply and be happy!”
and, well she said a couple of other things…

She finally ended the conversation with…
Oh yeah, last but not least “You have to keep making my tamales! I don’t know why but people love those things! And follow every step I gave you and NEVER, EVER make Tamales mad or in a negative mood, they will come out “agrios” (sour/bad) also learn to make mole because your boyfriend loves my mole! And I know you love your Arros con Leche gorda so learn to make that too!” Finally we were getting ready to say good night and she said “I’m sorry if I’m being selfish, I know I need to be stronger but if you could feel this, I would never wish it on anyone, it is so so so painful”

Even though it was nice to have that talk, I couldn’t help but continue and ask god, why?….

Still wishing for a miracle,

Beads for Battle


“A kind gesture can reach a wound only compassion can heal” -unknown

I have to admit I use to look at people who had no legs or were disabled in some way weather it was being sick or what not and I would get so sad for them.
I remember when I was like 7 years old and I had to get in the bus with my grandma in Mexico, there was a kid in there with no shoes all dirty and gross, he smelled so so bad. He only had one leg and had these hand made crutches to help him around. When we got out of the bus I started to cry and my grandma asked what was wrong? I told her I was sad for that little boy as I asked why don’t his parents take him a shower? And why did “diosito” (god) only give him one leg?
She said to me that he probably didn’t have parent’s and that something must have happened to him in explanation of the leg…
I cried even harder and said “Grandma why do parents leave?”
Since I was also suffering in understanding why I didn’t have a father at the time, I just didn’t get it.
I remember going to church that week on Sunday and that’s when I really started to pray. I began by praying for the little boy as I asked him to please bless him with some love and support because he was a little boy and didn’t deserve to be alone.
And that’s when I began to ask God to please protect my family and loved ones because I wouldn’t want to loose them or to see them hurt.
I remember thinking that if I did this every night and said thank you everyday we would all be okay.
As you all may have read after finding out about my mom’s diagnostic I felt like god had let me down and I was mad at him…
But don’t worry I think him and I are cool now 🙂
But I was mad because I guess I felt that as long as I spoke to him and asked and thanked every one would be fine. But I didn’t realize that there was more to this disease then what god controls and that I am NOT the only one feeling this pain.

“Hi my name is Cynthia. In April 2013 I was diagnosed with stage 3 Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. I started this organization to show support and spread positivity to others who are fighting for their lives. These strong individual’s need support to have the confidence to continue their battle…”

About a week or so I “met” Cynthia through a facebook message.
The thing is I already knew her story because we both have a wonderful friend by the name of Nairy who shared her story with me and told me a bit about her organization “Beads for battle”
I’ll admit that when Nairy told me I didn’t pay much attention. It’s not that I wasn’t interested I remember thinking “Why to such a young girl god, poor thing” but I was so caught up in my own life and issues that I didn’t further look into it.
When Cynthia contacted me on Facebook I felt like she had just gave me one of those big bear hugs that just make you relax and feel like everything will be okay. I felt the fight in her words and mind as well as true sympathy coming out of everything she wrote.
I knew right then and there that God gave her only what she could handle. God knew her strength and her big heart and knew she would use it to support others and spread love as well as her strength.
In that moment I knew I didn’t have to actually meet Cynthia in person to know that this young lady was an angel. As she told me that my family and I would be in her prayers and reminded me that “No one fights alone” I knew she was there for me.
That same day as we messaged back and forth, Cynthia offered to send my family and I some bracelets with beads and crosses that would remind us that we were not alone. Yesterday I received those beads and it was like Christmas in February! Not only were they absolutely beautiful but they put a big smile on my face because it’s like I could hear her telling me “No one fights alone”
In that moment I realized that we really are brought into this world for different purposes and I just pray that God continues to give people like Cynthia, my mom and other cancer victims the strength to fight on!
Happy with my pretty bracelets;

P.S if you’d like to donate to help Cynthia continue with this wonderful organization or would like to order a bracelet for a family member or yourself contact her at or find her on twitter: @beadsforbattle or find her page on facebook: beads for battle Inc.

Can we get 6,000…?


It’s Friday after noon and I just called my mom to see how she was doing?
She is a bit better today, her back no longer hurts but she can barely walk, because the pain on the leg is still very strong.
We got a hold of the doctor after we left the hospital and clearly I was right (read my last post) the doctor at emergency over exaggerated a bit. I mean he wasn’t lying, yes cancer in the bone eventually eats up at the bones causing them to collapse. However my mom isn’t quiet there yet. The doctor said her cancer had not grown or moved compared to the last scan he did and that as long as we acted on it we can buy her some time.

Our next issue is the Medi-Cal, my mom has been waiting for an approval for full coverage for over a year now and every time it gets denied….

“She make to “much money!”” they say….

Yet she has no income at all coming in right now… Does that make any sense?

Anyway, as of now my mom has a monthly deductible of 1000 for any medical care that’s not including her treatments and medication.

Therefor even though the doctor has suggested a treatment that can prolong her life and radiation to decrease the pain, we have to either wait or get about $6,000 together to get things started.

Well as you all may predict my mouth dropped as I shead tears knowing there was no way I could get $6,000. My mom told me to stop crying “things will work out for the best.” Even though I appreciate her strength and I am glad she is so positive, I knew in that moment things won’t fall into place any time soon. Unless I could get $6,000 soon. I knew there was no way I was going to win the lottery or meet some one super wealthy that wouldn’t mind just giving me 6,000 dollars and I knew I couldn’t save that money on top of all the bills I have to pay with the kind of money I make. So I decided to swallow my pride and start a fundraiser. Well its not exactly a fundraiser I guess, it’s more like another way of begging for money which is why I kept questioning it and why I’m keeping it from my mom.
So far I’ve raised 265 dollars just telling a small summary of our crazy life story and if this is going to help get my mom treated faster then so be it. I don’t care if she finds out and gets mad, I don’t care what other’s have to say, I need her here with me and the fact that I can’t make things better kills me inside every single day. Therefore I will do anything to get her that treatment,  even if it’s considered begging.

I’m sorry mom that I am asking others for help but I’m not ready to give in to loosing you just yet and I still can’t handle all of this on my own.

For those of you interested in her status, I’ll keep you updated.

and if you care to donate or maybe even just want to share the link to help me spread the word….

Share this link on your social media pages and ask friends to share too! Let’s raise some money for my mommy!

Until next time,

A year ago…


Most of the time we as humans just go day by day with out appreciating life and realizing how time flys by.
The only time we notice how fast time has gone is when someone’s birthday comes up, some kind of anniversary, or someone dearly to us passes away.

I use to be like that, I had my usual prayers “may god protect my family, loved ones and friends from all bad and evil blah blah blah” but I never really thought about it, I didnt sit there to think that I might go to bed and might wake up to tragic news or may not even wake up at all.

Until a year ago today…

I was at a loved ones funeral, I stood at the burial listening to the soothing music playing in the back ground and I began to sing along because it was one of my mother’s favorite songs. With tears in my eyes I began to watch everyone else around me crying with such hurt because they were either the sister, brother, son, daughter, grandson, granddaughter, cousin, friend, niece or nephew of this wonderful lady and they all had to say good bye with hope to see her again someday. The one person who broke my heart the most was the mother, her cry yelled her hurt and pain. After all she had already barried 3 of her children. I’ve always heard the saying “A mother or father never wants to bury a child” and I understood the sadness behind it but watching this lady hurt so much made me understand the meaning of it. It broke my heart to pieces, I felt such a heavy burden because I just wanted to help her but there was no way I could.

In that moment I began to think about my mom who at the time was in the hospital trying to get better from a “pneumonia”. Last I heard they were going to get some test results that day and we could take her home. As I thought about her I told god “This might not be the right time or place but I just want to say Thank you, that you’ve yet to put me through this and I pray you wait a very very long time for that because this is so painful that I couldn’t imagine loosing my mother or a sibling.”

I just needed to thank god because the woman who passed ment so much to me and even more to her immediate family. I couldn’t imagine how I would cry, act, feel if it was my mother or a sibling.

In that moment I began to realize how nice it was to still have my family here to hear, hold, kiss and even fight with.

After all the tears and hugs, we headed out for a reception in honor of the deceased where they would play music, a clip with many pictures and memories and have a bunch of yummy food. I honestly already had no appetite and seeing the pictures made me more sad that she was gone. However, I knew I had to be strong because I was there to support a lot of people I had grown to care about.

As I began to eat a bit and watch the beautiful memorabilia they made, my phone rang…

It was my mother, I was waiting for her call because she promised to call me as soon as they gave her the results of the exams.

I’ll never forget this moment…

“Hi mija the results are in…”
“What did they say?”
“Kelsey, don’t cry, don’t get mad, and try to relax…”

Tears had already started running down my eyes to my cheeks…

“What mom!? Tell me already…”

“I have Lung Cancer… Stage 4…”


I cried and I cried and I cried I was so mad I couldn’t understand why and how god could do this to us…

I could hear her as she began to sob her self and said “Kelsey I told you not to cry!!!”

All I could say was “Come on mom…”

After we hung up I was so mad I was standing in the back of the building by a door and I felt as if life was crashing down on me, I couldn’t breath I tried to catch some air but I felt myself having an anxiety attack my stomach was turning and all I could taste was the salty tears running down my face into my mouth…

I was hugged by those around me including the mother of the deceased who told me “Look at me! We don’t know why god does these things but what we do know is he only gives us what we can handle, you must be strong for your mother she needs you more then she has ever needed you right now…” I could hear everything everyone was telling me including what she said but I was not comprehending like it was in another language! I was surrounded by all these loving people but in that moment I felt alone in my mind asking god “What the hell is your problem? Why my family after all we have gone through?”

Now, a year later I honestly don’t understand how we have done it. But I do understand what the lady said when she told me “we are only given what we can handle” and I finally comprehend even if I hate to accept it. I am so emotional because I honestly did not think my mom would see another Thanksgiving or Holiday Season. I am so so happy and so grateful that she is here with us and I pray to god, now that I’ve made peace with him again and apologized for attacking him that he please keep her here with me for many more years to come and continue to help her be strong so that she could fight on.

I am also grateful and appreciate all those wonderful people that were by my side the minute our family found out. We were forced to welcome cancer into our lives as I was trying to support another family who had just lost a loved one to cancer. But if I had not had them there by my side I wouldn’t have been okay. I am also thankful for those that have stayed by my side until today.

Day by day nothing may change but when you look back everything is different, we must take a minute and appreciate today so that we don’t find ourselves looking back with regret.

Spreading my hope and faith to all of you,