I believe in the strength of a support system. I come from a wildly large family on my mother’s side, with nearly three hundred and fifty members in just my maternal grandfather’s family alone. In February of 2016, I lost my maternal grandfather to cancer. He had always been my rock, my cheerleader, and by far the most influential person in my life. My grandfather taught me how to take a step back, breathe, listen to myself, and respond to how I’m feeling. When he was diagnosed with cancer, my world felt as if it was crumbling before me. My family was told that his cancer was caught in its early stages and that they would set forth a plan of treatment to follow; he was told he had time. Unfortunately, the doctors were wrong and my grandfather’s cancer quickly began to spread to his brain within a month. After my grandfather lost his life three months later, my family had to figure out how to navigate life without him. He brought so much joy and hope into my life, and all of a sudden it was taken away from me. Despite all the pain and sorrow I felt, I was supported no matter what. I could always count on my family and friends as I went through this time of uncertainty and confusion. All of the unfamiliar emotions and feelings I experienced made it possible for me to learn to open myself up to my support system. Ever since my grandfather’s passing, I have been much more honest with not only myself but also with my inner circle. I have learned to let go of all anything that has built up inside of me and release the tension through spending time with my family and friends. I believe everyone on this earth needs a network of family and friends they can depend on, regardless of what they may be going through. In the end, everything that happens in your life should be put into perspective, but when you are in the moment, the only way to grow and develop is when you can lean on others. I think one of the most important things you can do for yourself is build relationships and bonds that will provide you with emotional connections and bring happiness into your own life for years to come. When one is in a time of need, every person should have the opportunity to seek out their loved ones and ask them for assistance.