By LAYLA ABBAS
Do not take any day on Earth for granted.
I never understood the importance of this adage until July 15, 2010. I never understood the value of saying, “Goodbye, I love you” to people I cared about until July 15, 2010. I never understood it until the day I almost lost my mother. July 15, 2010 is a day I will never forget.
I watched my mom put on her makeup as she was getting ready for work. She had a mint green tank top on and asked why I kept staring at her.
I did not know the answer to this question, which was surprising. I had an answer to everything. My 11-year-old self was very inquisitive.
I squirmed as she gave me a kiss goodbye and left for work.
I was watching an episode of “So You Think You Can Dance” with my dad and brother. It was an intense elimination episode and my eyes burned with sleepiness.
As I was getting ready to go to sleep, my dad received a call from an obscure number. We learned that my mother was involved in a very serious car accident and was in critical condition.
As I watched my dad frantically grab his shoes and rush out the door, I stayed behind and couldn’t remember if I told my mom “I love you” before she left.
I woke up the next morning and had to explain to my twin brothers, who were 4 at the time, where our mom was. “She will be home soon” I would tell them, while pasting a fake smile on my face.It would be two weeks before I could even see my mom. Two long weeks without her hugs, or her kisses that made me squirm.
This unfortunate situation allowed me to understand the meaning of life a little more. Life is shorter than we think. Wasting any day can lead to a mass amount of regret later on. And ignoring a person’s affection could be taken away without warning. So we must refrain from taking days and people we care about for granted.
Instead of spending hours watching television or staring at our social media, we should take a few minutes to reconnect with someone important to us. Reach out to a particular person you miss and simply ask how their day is going. Time is extremely precious, so we must participate in things that bring us joy and spread kindness as much as we can.