This I Believe: I Once Believed in Miracles


Kiela Sorrells and Mekayla Phan

Kiela Sorrells is an active member in the National Honors Society, HOSA, and runs for our Cross – Country and Track team. She loves to make people smile, and her goal in life is to become a trauma surgeon. After high school she plans to go Washington State University in order to achieve her dreams. In this essay, she writes about her very personal experience and beliefs about miracles and cherishing time with those you love. 

I was twelve when my mom was diagnosed with stage four stomach cancer. I was thirteen when my mom was also diagnosed with stage four esophagus cancer, and I was still thirteen when my mom got told that she has less than two months to live. I never thought I’d have to go through something as hard as having to hear a stranger come to tell my mom had less than two months to live. I had less than two months left with my best friend. Everyday that went by, she was getting worse. I was told to start preparing for her death. She couldn’t keep any food down because of how bad the cancer had gotten in her esophagus. It was the worst experience of my life having to take care of my mom like she was a little kid. I had the responsibility to help feed her through her feeding tube, help her get dressed, walk around with her everywhere so she didn’t fall over, and I helped bathe her. I never once thought that I would have to go through something as hard as helping my mom with normal activities that everyone does everyday.

Out of nowhere, everything started changing. I came home one day to find her cooking in the kitchen by herself. This may seem like a small act to you, but it was the first home cooked meal I had in weeks made by her because she never had the strength to stand on her own for more than just a couple of minutes. Day-by-day after that, I noticed her doing everyday things again that she wasn’t able to do a couple months before.

Then, I remember it like it was yesterday. I was sitting at lunch with my friends when my phone started ringing. It was my mom. I still remember the tone in her voice, and how excited she was. She started off by saying “Baby, I have good news. Can you talk for five minutes?” I responded by saying “Of course, what’s up?” She said, “I just wanted to let you know that I just got home from my doctor’s appointment and she said that the cancer is gone. Baby, we don’t have to worry anymore. I’m cancer free.” I automatically started crying because of how happy I was. My life finally felt normal again. I didn’t have to go each day worrying whether or not that would be my last day with my mom. I started to believe that miracles actually did happen to normal people like us, and that they weren’t only made for fairy tales.

A few months went by and she was fine. She was better again until I woke up one night to the sound of the ambulance arriving at my house. My mom was rushed to the hospital that night, complaining of chest pains. The next day, we were all sitting there as a family in her room when her doctor walked in and asked us all if we could step out while she had a word with my mom and dad. My sisters and I stood outside of the hospital room together, thinking the same thing. We knew it came back. We were used to this procedure. The hospital was practically our second home. When we were called back in the room, we came in to find my mom and dad crying. They told us that the cancer had come back and she had only a couple of weeks to live after that point. She would be put into hospice when she became strong enough to leave the hospital. My life felt as if it were ending because I couldn’t see myself living without my best friend by my side.  

It was February 12th, 2015 when she started seeing things. She started having conversations with people who weren’t there. I remember one night specifically when my older sister and I were trying to have a conversation with her by her hospital bed that was set up in our living room. She started staring off into space like she saw something. She said “Hey Ky, look behind you. Do you see them?” I responded by saying “I don’t see anything? What am I supposed to be seeing?” She then said, “The angels Ky. They’re beautiful. They want me to come with them.” My sister and I just looked at each other and started crying. We knew it was time. We knew that her time was almost up. On February 14th, 2015, I hung out with my best friend Mikayla at church almost all night, and I got home super late to find my mom sound asleep on her bed. I didn’t want to wake her by saying goodnight, so I just went to bed myself. To this day, I regret everything I did that night because I woke up to my dad saying that she passed away in her sleep.

I once believed that miracles were true. I once believed that my family was blessed with a miracle, but now my whole view on them has changed after experiencing one of the hardest things a kid could ever experience. I now believe that you should spend every moment you have with the people you love instead of doing what I did. I sat around praying and wishing that something incredible would happen to my family when I could have been spending more time with her. Miracles are totally possible, but instead of waiting for one to happen, one should spend time with the ones you love because you never know when your last day will actually be your last.