MY Key to Life

Mark - Rock Falls, Illinois
Entered on September 16, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30

I have wanted to be a basketball player my entire life. I wanted to just play basketball whether it was a semi-pro league, overseas, or even the NBA. But when I graduated high school, I screwed up my knee, and I couldn’t play basketball that year.

After I screwed up my knee, I went to the doctor and found out I had to have knee surgery. I got into “screw it” mode after that. I dropped out of school three times and nearly ruined my chances of going back. I completely alienated myself from everyone and everything that was associated with basketball. I hit rock bottom at that point. But I realized on my 20th birthday that I am the only person who can fix my problems.

I believe that anybody, no matter what their “life story” is, has the ability to do something special with their life. My motto is, “you get what you put in and people get what they deserve.” That gets me through school and basketball every day. If you stick with something you will be rewarded eventually. Lance Armstrong battled cancer and a brain tumor and went on to win the “Tour de France,” seven consecutive times.

My mom has wanted to be a nurse ever since she was a little girl. She wasn’t able to go back to school because she had kids. She opened up a tanning spa instead of going to school and becoming a nurse. She had to close the spa down because she couldn’t get the help she needed. That tanning spa put our family into major financial problems so my dad spent every last penny he had to put her through school. We almost lost our house from closing that spa down. But through the constant stress and pressure to pass, she did it at 51. Her key was keeping a roof over her kid’s head.

Everyone has hard times, but not everyone deals with them the right way. I dealt with my problems by settling and moving on, but now I push through them. People that push through their problems become successful in life. These people keep going until they accomplish their goal. Not everyone has the motivation to do that though. Finding the motivation is the key to life. My key is my motto. What is your key?