Life lessons Mom's final days taught us
By Kennedy Nichols

Posted on May 20, 2019 11:39 AM

Editor’s Note: A two-sports all-star, Kennedy Nichols is completing her junior year at Logan County High School. She also just spent her first Mother’s Day without her beloved mom, Kim Nichols. These are her thoughts about life without this beloved woman.

Aug, 6, 2018 I woke up to start my morning ritual for school. I heard some heavy footsteps and sniffles heading up our stairway and immediately I knew something was not right because no one was supposed to be home.

“Kennedy, she’s gone…,” I heard my dad say in a soft voice. “Who is gone?” I frantically replied back. “Kim, she passed away in her sleep this morning, Kennedy,” my dad said back to me while coming in for a hug.

On that day, my life did a complete 180 twist, realizing at age 16 from every day now on I had to go on with my life without my best friend, without my mom. This experience has taught me plenty of life lessons throughout her two-year cancer journey and has brought a whole new realization, appreciation and perspective on life.

Cancer is a teacher. If you sit and pay attention, it will teach you lessons you never thought you needed to know until you go through it. In the beginning, it is hard to realize and understand the lessons it’s trying to teach you, but as more days go by you become more mindful of the lessons cancer has to teach you. Throughout my mom’s journey, there were plenty of morals that I was taught but there were three that especially stood out to me.

On March 9, 2017 my mom was diagnosed with stage four colon cancer that had also spread to her liver. She had to complete many chemo treatments and undergo surgery, but never complained about it or threw a pity party for herself. She held herself with class and integrity, setting a great example for everyone she was surrounded by.

My mom always taught me to appreciate the moment and not wish time away because soon I would learn lesson number one, no one is promised tomorrow.

I witnessed my mom go through the side effects that came with her chemo treatments and I felt as if I took it harder than she did. I always wondered and asked her how was she able to go on with her day, go to work, come home and take care of our family and act as if nothing was bothering her. She then explained to me lesson number two, if there is a will there's a way. Life will never be fair, but you have two options: You can give up and quit or you can find a way to persevere through the adversity and to keep a positive mindset because it could always be worse.

The week before my junior year started my mom spent the week in the hospital, and they sent her home with the news that she had limited time to live. I honestly didn’t know how to deal with this news, and that’s where lesson number three came into play: You just have to let go, and let God.

Some things in life are just out of our control and there is nothing you can do except give it all to God, and that is what my family did. We started worrying less, and praying more and thanking God for all the wonderful moments he blessed us with her.

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