The Kingdom of Tenacity

Alexandra - Miami Beach, Florida
Entered on April 20, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30

The Kingdom of Tenacity

“Be ashamed to die until you have won some victory for humanity”.

Horace Mann

I believe in accomplishment.

Accomplishment that is never too small or too big, and is individual. Something that fills the person’s blood with adrenaline, rushes into his head, pumping joy and excitement into the brain. It is a vicious cycle in its own way: we more we achieve, the more adrenaline our bodies produce, and that in turn challenges us to accomplish more.

When I was twenty years old, I decided I didn’t want to have “just” a life. I didn’t want to “just” graduate from school, to “just” find a job or to “just” settle down. I had to be different, I wanted a fight. As a result of this urge, I crossed the Atlantic and ended up in U.S.

I made it to another country, with a completely different culture and language; I pushed through a lot of intangible and palpable, wall-like borders on my way to educating myself, achieving my best, and, ultimately, realizing my full potential. It’s hard to pace myself, I am never happy; I am constantly restless and overzealous in my endeavors. I am riding the adrenaline board in the ocean of Excitement; and opportunities, buddied up with challenges behind them, keep hitting against my poor board as I am trying to push myself harder spitting out the salty drops of failures the Ocean sends me.

“Look!” I yell at them. – “Look how far I’ve gone! I am not gonna stop!”

Other times, I feel like a runner in need of a water break. The farther I go, the less I want to stop. My quest for achievement, bolstered by my ambitiousness, is never complete.

My mom believes in horoscopes; she attributes people certain qualities based on their sign. According to her, I am a Capricorn, a little goat with horns, and, indeed, I am proud of recognizing my identity as a part of the livestock. Just as I am supposed to, when I see a gate, I want to hit it. See that mountain ahead of you? The same couple minutes it is going to take to read this, the very same time is required for me to get on top. Look up! I am already there, grinning at you, proud of my achievement.

You probably want to know how it all started. Well, here is the story.

Every summer, since I was two years old, I was taken away from my parents to spend some time at my grandma’s, who lives on the Crimea peninsula on the Black Sea. She had to entertain me, so every once in a while, we would take walks along the beach, picking shells, cool little stones and rainbow-colored, circumcised of its sharp edges, pieces of glass, as we talking about how staff in this world works.

There was a mountain in sight; it stood there as a wall, protecting the wild strand from the civilized share of the coast. It looked like nature’s grandmother itself, all dressed in pretty green dress, smiling as the Sun was going down, and probably pondering over the same things we, humans, were interested in.

My grandma, whom I suspected I got my adventurous streak from, was telling that, when they were young, they would climb the mountain, walk through the top to the other side, down to the popular international children’s camp called Artek. I guess she wasn’t being too attentive because next time she turned around, I was on my way to the top.

“Get off!” she shouted.

I believe that was the first time when little Miss Tenacity got out and introduced herself to the world, as the little girl went down, proud of her accomplishment.