Laurinda - Beaverton, Oregon
Entered on March 12, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30

Some people experience things from murders, a death in the family, to a mere scraped knee. All these things, no matter how ridiculous, have the ability to change and/or define you.

February 15th 2008, I wake up at 2 o’ clock, and my breath no where in sight. My heart was beating fast like a rudder in a boat, pit pattering for life. Halfway through the breath that wasn’t quit doing the job, I realized I was fading fast, gasping for the substance that almost every human being takes for granted.

I sat up fast grabbing my chest trying to breath. At that moment I knew the thing that had the ability to kill me if I didn’t act fast would, in fact kill me. I reached for my inhaler and took a puff…nothing happened. I was officially in a devastating panic. This killer of me and women was, and is asthma.

I have been living with asthma since I was a baby. I know it’s not at all as serious as cancer or aids, but when you’re in my situation it very much is. It still has the ability to change how I see my life and how I can live it. The choice is ultimately mine, whether I want to be confined to an average life of inhalers and fake doctor’s notes of a strict, “No hard activity or running forever!” No, I am not going to live my life that way nor am I going to push my limits and put myself in the hospital.

I think it would be amazing if someone was to come up with a cure for my disease, but I would much rather see a cure for cancer. I can live with this and with every attack I feel as if I learn more about myself. I also learn new ways to maneuver around my “disability”. I know I can overcome an obstacle if I wish to, and I do.

February 16, 2008, I’m sitting awake for the second night in a row, thinking about my life, seriously wondering if I was going to cease breathing altogether, or if I have one more chance. With every attack I have, I feel the pressure, beating down on my ever so fragile, gift of an existence. I think that this is my last chance. Even with these fears, even when I put myself in situations such as running to stay fit or just one of those everyday obstacles. I believe obstacles in life don’t have to define who you are necessarily, but the experiences and thirst to over come those obstacles very well should.