I Can Do Anything

Carolyn - Syracuse, New York
Entered on August 28, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30

I believe that I can do anything. This personal philosophy holds true because of the people around me who inspire me everyday. One person in particular: my sister. My older sister was almost two years old before my parents discovered that she is deaf. In a story fit for a movie, my sister and infant cousin were asleep in my house when my father sneezed. My cousin, shocked by the noise, immediately awoke and starting crying. My sister, without hearing my father’s sneeze or the shrieking next to her, kept sleeping soundly. A subsequent appointment with an audiologist confirmed that she is almost completely deaf.

Ever since I can remember, she has crushed stereotypes about deaf people in her actions. Playing sports alongside hearing people was certainly a challenge; she had to learn how to communicate with her teammates and watch for when they stopped running instead of hearing a whistle. She is very intelligent, currently attending school for her master’s degree, and has even traveled to more countries than I can count. My sister can do anything…except hear. If my sister can do anything, then what’s my excuse?

After watching my sister live her life to the fullest despite prejudice, I have been inspired me to take risks, however small, and try new things in my own life. As a high school senior, I applied to colleges that I didn’t think would accept me; and, to my delight, some even did accept me. I decided to spend an entire semester in London, an extremely intimidating and scary idea that turned out to be the best experience of my life.

I can do anything. I am, however, realistic. I know I will never run 100 meters in less than ten seconds, or win eight gold medals, let alone one. But this motto has encouraged me everyday through my years in college. In May, I will graduate from college, and apply for that dream job I think I could never get. But when I accept the offer for that dream job, I will remember that, without my sister, I never would have applied. Thanks to her, I know that I can do anything.