This I Believe

Anthony - State College, Pennsylvania
Entered on December 12, 2006
Age Group: 18 - 30

I believe in the power of the mind and its ability to get through tough times.

ADHD is an acronym for Attention Deficit Hyper-Activity Disorder. It is what I was diagnosed with at the age of 14. I never quite understood what it meant at that age, and to tell the truth, I still don’t.

My parents were always bothering me about my poor grades throughout middle and high school. No matter how hard I tried to study for an exam, I would do poorly. Sitting in class taking notes was not the problem. It was paying attention and sitting still. So, my parents brought me to a doctor and a psychiatrist who both tagged me with the disorder of ADHD. They started giving me all these different kinds of medication saying that it will help me focus and do better in school. Naturally I believed them and began to take the medication. They were right in some aspects. I stopped fidgeting in class, refrained from the leg twitch, and paid attention. My parents couldn’t have been happier. But the grades were still not there. C’s at my best. All the way through high school it plagued me into thinking that I was not academically intelligent. I had weak SAT scores and I began to get down about myself. My parents told me that I would never amount to anything and the only job I would have on the streets would be sweeping it.

By the grace of God, I was granted admission into Penn State Altoona where the problem followed. Studying hard, still taking medication, and still getting low grades. I though about my study habits and decided to make a change. I was going to actually try hard and pass class without taking the medication. The first few days sitting in class were tough. I began to bounce all over the place and get irritated at the slightest thing. I was starting to think about dropping out when a friend simply told me that I should “give up” as he passed by my room. Those words ran through my head over and over during the next few minutes. That was the last thing I needed, but it turned out to be the boost I was looking for. I decided to give it my all and study harder then I have ever before. Hitting the books for multiple hours at the library instead of just one was a step in the right direction. Keeping in mind all the people who said I couldn’t do it was extremely motivating. I began to believe in my mind that I was able to succeed in academics.

For the past three years it has been working. The grades have been steadily increasing along with my attitude and self confidence. For numerous years doctors, physiatrists, parents and others though I had a problem. All I needed was to believe in myself and not let brain power go to waste.