Loss of father motivates junior

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Loss of father motivates junior

Lillian Tram

Lillian Tram

Lillian Tram

Karla Romero, Reporter

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     While others are eating Christmas dinner and joking with their family inside their warm homes, there is one family who is not at home. Instead, they are visiting the cemetery in the chilly December night. That family is junior Darrien Reed’s, visiting the grave of his late father.

     Reed’s father passed away right before his eighth grade year. Cancer damaged his father’s remaining kidney, although Reed is unsure of what type of cancer it was.

     “I was old enough to understand it, but I didn’t understand the longevity of it,” Reed said. “When he died I was like, ‘Ok, maybe he’ll come back.’ I was young and didn’t know any better.”

     Reed’s loss hit him with less force compared to the reaction of the rest of his family. Although he was the closest to his father, it was easier for him to cope because everyone else was a lot more sad than he was. He was the one to break the news to the rest of his family.

     “I saw it coming,” Reed said. “I knew it was gonna happen eventually, but it took them by surprise. I actually saw him deteriorating.”

     After his father’s passing, Reed started disliking hospitals. However, the situation has taught him to live his life to the fullest. He does not want to miss out on anything, because he feels he could die at any moment,. He is aware that his dad was only in his 30s when his life took a turn for the unexpected.

     “When I was younger I was unknown, quiet, nobody wanted to talk to me,” Reed said. “And then, [after his death], I started being louder, talking more [and] laughing more. Being happy was a way to cope with not being sad. I started making friends.”

     Because it has been four years since the incident, Reed admitted it has gotten easier to cope with his father’s death, as well as others’ questions.

     “It was so long ago, it doesn’t affect me like it used to,” Reed said. “I’d rather people just know. I’m probably more open about this than anything, [because] people ask why I act the way I act, and this is the main reason as to why.”

     Although his father passed, Reed has managed to remain positive and upbeat. He believes it is due to his father’s attitude toward life when he was still around. Even when Reed was upset, he quickly realized that was no way to live.

     “[My dad] always used to crack jokes; that’s where I get it from,” Reed said. “He was funny, so I’m funny.’”

     Regardless of his nonchalant attitude, Reed said he has hard days every now and then when he’s overcome with missing his dad. Every day he is reminded of his father’s absence as he passes by his old house.

     “It’s just weird, but you get used to it,” Reed said. “[It took me] maybe two weeks. Everyone was crying except me. Have you ever been too sad, and you just can’t cry? It was like that. I had to comfort everybody else while I tried to not die on the inside.”

     Although most people will never have to go through this exact situation, Reed states that a similar situation will present itself in everyone’s life at some point.

     “There’s no point in being mad at what’s eventually gonna happen to everyone in life,” Reed said. “It’s not fair, but life’s not fair. You gotta be happy, because if you’re not happy, then you’re not being a positive influence on the world. It’s inevitable. It could’ve happened when I was two. It could’ve happened when I was 60. But it’s gonna happen regardless; [you] can’t help it.”

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