Recently Kevin Love published an open letter titled “Everyone Is Going Through Something” where he discusses his struggles acknowledging and dealing with his mental health. Kevin Love is one of the best players on the Cleveland Cavaliers, and anyone that knows me knows how much I love all things Cleveland, but that is not why I connected with his letter. Love begins his letter by stating that he has never been comfortable sharing much about himself, and I feel similarly. I will talk to anyone about pretty much anything, but to be completely honest I don’t like delving into my personal life. Love talks about his panic attacks, but he explains that these attacks were deeper than he had imagined and were actually derived from never properly grieving the lose of his grandmother. Kevin Love, one of the top basketball players in the world, has difficulties in his life and I think the most valuable line in his letter is “everyone is going through something that we can’t see”. Although Love is primarily discussing mental health, his message can be extended even further. Every person truly has something in their lives that they are internally dealing with.
I recently wrote a blog post about my love for basketball and how the sport has helped me during some of my darkest times. As I mentioned, I lost my mom when I was 15. She was diagnosed with stage four breast cancer when I was in third grade and she battled for years. When you looked at my mom you saw a strong, loving, beautiful, caring, giving woman. You would have never even known that she was sick. Kevin Love’s words couldn’t be any truer: “everyone is going through something that we can’t see”. My mom would get treatment, work a full day, be home in time to be there for my sister and me, and stay up with us while we did our homework. Obviously I knew my mom was sick, but I would often forget because of her incredible strength and the fact that she never complained. My mom taught me what it truly means to be a good person. The reason I am so strong is because my mom showed me that there is no reason not to be, and the reason I try not to judge is because like Kevin Love said, and like my mom showed me, every person is going through something that we have absolutely no idea about.
After I published the blog about basketball and my mom, several people came up to and reached out to me telling me saying that they connected with the piece. As I mentioned, I typically do not talk about my personal life, but that is doing a complete disservice to my mom. My mom was an inspiration to everyone that she encountered and I want to spread her beauty to the world. I do try to live everyday in honor of my mom, and in a way that would make her proud. When I lost my mom I was sad and I was angry. It wasn’t fair. I eventually realized that although I lost my mom when I was 15, I was still so incredibly lucky to have the best mom and friend in my life for 15 years, because that is a gift that not everyone is given. I realized that instead of being sad, I should be appreciative. I was blessed with the most incredible role model.
Life is all about perspective. Instead of getting upset with the negatives in life, take a step back and acknowledge all that you have to be grateful for. Also never compare losses or misfortunes. Different people and events mean different things to different people, so never think your loss is worse than someone else’s. And most importantly, always remember that every person is dealing with something in their lives that the rest of the world may not know about, so never assume you fully know a situation or and never immediately judge someone. Life can be unfair yes, but at the end of the day we all have something positive in our lives and we must appreciate the positives in our lives rather than focus on the negatives. I miss my mom so so much every day, but I try to go through everyday living a life she would be proud of.