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I Learn Library

A human library inspired by the stories in the film

Having A Negative Mind Will Not Lead You Into A Positive Life

By Jaylene Maldonado  |   From : Royal Palm Beach  |   School : Royal Palm Beach High School

Do you like to go on vacation? I love going on vacation but when I hear bad news I don’t really like it anymore. When you go on a vacation you should have a good time and be happy, you shouldn’t be sad and bothered. Everyone has ups and downs but you should stay positive because life isn’t always going to be easy, you’re going to have difficult steps that you can learn from, because in the future you would want to learn from your mistakes, and never think negative about any type of situation.

The day I found out about my brother was the night before we left to go to Puerto Rico, I was in my bedroom finishing what I needed to pack. Then my dad comes in, and he says “Jaylene I need to tell you something, your brother Joel has Leukemia which is a cancer that has to do with the blood cells.’’ When I heard those words my heart jumped. After I finished packing we went to go see him in Miami, I told Joel my brother,  that I wanted to shave my head to donate my hair because I didn’t want to see my brother in pain, he loved his hair. I wanted to do something to be helpful.

When we left to go to Puerto Rico I was so very upset, I felt like my brother wasn’t going to try his hardest to beat cancer. All I could think about was my brother, I went to a family dinner all I could focus on was my brother, hoping that he was feeling ok.

The day we came back from Puerto Rico, my dad took me to get my haircut. I was so excited afterwards because I knew I could make my brother smile for what I did. The day after I donated my hair I went to visit my brother with the entire family. I remember we had to take two different cars. I told my brother what I did with my hair and I remember that he smiled and told me he loved me. I was so grateful that I saw him smile,it was the first time I had seen him smile after a long time. After a while, everyone left the hospital but I stayed with my parents, then I left really late. I would always visit my brother when I can.

Today is December 1, 2017 and my brother still has Leukemia. I try everything in my power to make him happy and keep a smile on his face. It’s hard to do that because he is always in pain, physically and mentally, it’s hard to see and not be able to help him. Over the weekend I went to go visit my brother with my father, there was a lot of people there that day. I was feeling really sad when I was on my way to go see him. When I got to the hospital everyone was sitting in his room with a smile on there faces, but I didn’t see my sister in law. When I found her she told me that my brother only has a ten percent chance of living if he leaves the hospital. I kept asking why he wanted to leave so bad. Then my dad said “ Joel doesn’t like being trapped in the hospital all the time and that he’s really tired of the doctors poking at him all the time.” When I heard those words I broke down crying because I thought I would lose him or that I wouldn’t be able to say goodbye and that I love him. But my friend told me to stay positive and that he was gonna keep trying. I remember the words “Jaylene don’t give up on him” coming out of my sister in law’s mouth. I stood by his side and held his hand and I told him that I love him with all my heart.

Sunday night my dad went to go get some snacks at the store, then he gets a call from my aunt saying “Joel isn’t getting better and something had happened”. My dad called me saying he had to go to Miami to be with him. I was worried that something bad really happened but my dad never told me what happened. But now I haven’t been thinking about losing my brother a lot because I feel that all the negative things I say are making my brother not get better.

I’ve learned a lot from not thinking negative about situations that are important to you. You never want to think negative because I feel that every negative situation has a positive impact on yourself, because you learn from those negative mistakes throughout your entire life. And if anything does happen to my brother I would never forget all the great moments I had with him.

Weeks have passed now, and it is January 17, my oldest brother Joel passed away on December on the 20th. When I found out that my brother passed away I was really devastated about it because I felt like I lost a part of my heart. I found out when I was with my friend, getting ready to go to the outlet mall. While we were getting into the car I got a phone call from my dad, “There is a family emergency, stay where you are I am going to get you”. So my father, came to my friends house and picked me up. I was already crying because something had happened. My whole family was there expect my little sister, she was in Miami with her father. But after all, my parents told me about my brother and why he passed away. They told me that the cancer wasn’t the thing that got my brother really sick, he didn’t have the cancer he had this type of infection. None of the medicine that the doctors gave Joel helped him.

His funeral was like a family reunion. I met family members and friends that said great things about Joel. I heard good stories about him, one of his co-workers who dressed up in a Spiderman costume, he wanted to honor my brother who loved to dress up in occasions. His co-worker said that during one of the jobs with Joel he heard that another one of his co-workers had a cancer too. My brother was helping her out and still working while he had his cancer. It surprised me because Joel was in a lot pain and he still helped everyone and worked on days he could have worked. That story will always remind me how kind and generous he is. When I saw my brother, I always thought that he would just wake up but he didn’t. I enjoyed that time with Joel and my family. Everyone shared great memories that they had with him.

Although, my brother is in a better place and isn’t suffering anymore. He still there in my heart and I would never forget all those amazing times I had with him. He fought hard man years and we all gave him all the love and support he needed.

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