Brittney - Hillsboro, Oregon
Entered on March 13, 2008
Age Group: Under 18
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I believe a smile can change your life. I was five years old; I arrived at Disney Land only to discover five minutes into the park that I couldn’t walk. The entire trip was spent in a stroller. Ten years later, back at Disney Land and again five minutes into the park I can not walk. I spend the whole trip in a wheel chair. Disney Land is supposed to be the happiest place on earth but for me it seems to only be a disappointment.

At the age of five I was diagnosed with Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis. Basically it’s identical to the old person arthritis commonly seen except it’s in every joint and in children. With a serious disease and many hours logged in the hospital it’s easy to be unhappy and feel sorry for myself.

Every person is searching for that ultimate happiness and purpose for life but the truth is happiness is not found it’s created. Every person creates the world around them. Positive people generally have good things happen to him, not because there lucky or special but because that’s the energy they are giving off so good things gravitate towards them. The same goes for people with a negative attitude who think the world is out to get them. If a person gives off a negative energy, negative things gravitate towards them.

When I was diagnosed with Arthritis I was too little to really understand. As I grew up I realized all the obstacles I had to face and the physical inabilities I had to adapt to. It would have been easy to be negative and give up but I was always taught different. I refused to let my illness control my life. I chose to be positive about it. Even when things were bad I always kept a smile on my face. My disease was so bad the doctors said I would be in a wheelchair by my freshman year. Now a graduating senior I have been on the Varsity cheerleading squad for four years. I have accomplished so much more than anyone ever expected. I always had a positive attitude and just kept on smiling. The smile changed my life.