Beep, beep, beep, nurses come and go, medicines are given out to sick patients, vitals checked and drains cleared. Beep, beep, beep. It is a flurry of activities each time I accompany Nick to the hospital. If I get a ticket I will go back in time. I will relive special moments and enjoy new adventures with my best friend Nick.
Courtesy of the ticket, Nick and I will go to the TTT ranch like we did every fall throughout junior high school. Upon arrival, we will quickly go to the target range to sight in our two-twenty-two guns to get ready for our night time varmint hunt. This is our favorite “hobby.” At dark, we will jump into our Polaris and turn on our favorite tunes. One of our favorites would be going back to country dirt roads looking for coyotes. We will choose to stay up late, sleep late and then repeat our evening ritual each day we are up there. There will be many smiles, laughs and new memories made.
Our high school adventures are something we had always dreamed about. With the ticket, we will enjoy the everyday fun things like double dating, hanging out on Saturday nights with our friends around the fire and Friday night football games. September 2, 2016 will be the day to get ready for our last Cardinal football game of our senior year. We will pick up our dates, grab our “usual,” Asian Zing boneless wings, at Buffalo Wild Wings and make it in time for the kick-off. That will be followed by grabbing of our seats on the front row of the student section, Nick and I going down to the concession and picking up drinks and enough popcorn to last us throughout the game. We will yell, scream, cheer and rally our football team. That night, Nick and I can stay up late talking about the night, our girlfriends, future, and yes, a few jokes shared.
The homecoming dance will be the “big” event for the fall. We will both ask our dates the same way; a Domino’s pizza delivered to each girl with “Homecoming?” spelled out with pepperonis! They will both say yes! We will take my parents’ car, pick them up, go to dinner and head to the dance. The dance will definitely be great fun. The icing on the cake will be when they stop the music to announce the homecoming king and queen; drums will roll. “The Homecoming King is Nick Peters.,” the speaker will announce. The crowd will go wild with excitement. This will be a great night. Both of us will not have been prepared to be crowned when we go to our final high school dance, prom. In my mind, Nick is chosen king and I the prince. Many smiles, laughs, high-fives and new memories made will be the order of the day.
Unfortunately, none of this seems plausible. Nick has been battling leukemia for seven years. He needed a bone marrow transplant and his sister was a match. My best friend underwent the transplant in April 15, 2016 and is now fighting for his life. Because of Nick and his fearless strength, I have learned so much. His positive attitude and ability to overcome obstacles even when he is sick and so broken is unbelievable. Through his experience, I am reminded that life is precious and we are not guaranteed of tomorrow. Each day we have is a gift and should not be wasted. I now savor the small things, the everyday things like dinner with my family, going to the movies, and watching the sunset at the beach.
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