Brenna - Tempe, Arizona
Entered on September 10, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30

I believe everyone has a hero. My hero is someone who was right in front of my eyes for years. She lived two streets down the road and we played softball together, yet we never said more than hello. Until one random day she made the effort to find out who I was.

Senior year while I was sitting in the airport waiting for my flight that was delayed six hours, I received a text message from an unknown number. As soon as I read the name Toni, I had to take a second for myself to think. Prom queen, the most popular girl in our school, a two sport athlete and she was texting me? I thought it was going to be a quick question and then a simple goodbye. To my surprise, the conversation lasted for hours on end. For a year my eyes were closed to the world and I was living in darkness. Despite everything I told her, she still continued to talk to me. There were so many things we had in common that it left me speechless. This similarity created a bond that is unexplainable through words. It’s a feeling deep down inside, when you know the person sitting across from you cares about you as much as you care about them.

Toni is my hero for who she is as a person. The words, a smile is contagious, mean so much more to me now. I have watched people’s faces light up as soon as they see Toni walk in the room. Selfless is the perfect word to describe her. She is the person people turn to when something is wrong in their life, not only because she cares but also because she is the most insightful person you will ever meet. The situations she has been through allow her to put herself in others shoes, therefore allowing her to give the best advice possible.

There’s a long list of things I have learned from Toni, but these are the things that no one else could have brought to my attention. Too often people only see the top layer of situations. They get so caught up in what’s blinding them that they don’t see the bigger picture. In order to understand a situation, all sides have to be looked at in great depths. The answer is not always right in front of you, most times you have to search deep down and twist your thoughts. Although, sometimes the answer is simple and right where you thought it would be. Some questions have no answers and never will; and yet you learn to live with that.

The earth is only a small portion of the solar system. There are seven continents composed of over six and a half billion people. Out of those billions of people we are only one single spec. To change the world is asking a lot, but it’s possible with everyday heroes like Toni.