This I Believe

Leslie - Cissna Park, Illinois
Entered on February 6, 2007
Age Group: 18 - 30

The Mountains

God wouldn’t make a mountain I can’t climb. This belief has helped me make it through hard times and taught me many characteristics about myself. It has been tested many times in my eighteen years, especially during two life-changing experiences.

My first life-changing experience happened when I was six years old. At this young age, I was bitten by my grandfather’s dog, a black Labrador named Hunter. The most lacerated areas included the immediate area around my eye, the bridge of my nose, the inside of my mouth, and the underside of my chin. Over the next twelve years, there were numerous surgeries, laser treatments, and appointments. Acknowledgement of my determination and frustrations during those years has helped me to accept others for who they are on the inside, not by what defects they may have on the outside. I sometimes find myself thinking how I am one of the ‘lucky’ ones. My face will always show areas of scarring, but at least modern medicine was able to help me, unlike so many others, reconstruct my facial features. I climbed this mountain with nothing more than my willingness and stubborn ways to guide me. Even though I conquered this experience, there was nothing that could prepare for the next mountain in my life.

At the age of fifteen, I was concerned with only my friends and what we were doing on the weekends. My perspective changed with the death of one of my close family relatives. Grandpa Drilling had always been a stronghold in my life and in an instant he was gone. His lung condition had gone from being under control to critically severe in just a few short weeks. Prior to his death, my grandfather was admitted into a hospital and placed in a doctor-induced coma. He passed away a couple of days later on the last snow day of that year. His death has been the hardest experience I have had to go through. I know God put this mountain in front of me to change my life for a reason, even if I didn’t fully understand the way it had to happen. It was hard to go through all the pain and mourning of my grandfather’s death, but I now understand why God put this mountain in my life. This experience made me stronger, and I now have confidence in knowing that I can climb any and all mountains that God places before me. God has a plan for all of us and these horrible events were meant to happen so I would fully appreciate my life and the people in it. I believe God wouldn’t make a mountain I can’t climb because I have my determination, faith, and wisdom to guide me.