What Makes Me Say, “I believe.”

Charles Hinton - Fostoria, Ohio
Entered on October 23, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30

It comes to my attention that I have many things to offer not to just my family and friends, but the world. I offer my words of wisdom, advice, and general determination. The irony of how young I am and the amount of life I have experienced is quite, well ironic to say the least.

My determination originates from the many hard times I have endured throughout my life. My first struggle began when I was seven years old. One day my mother came to pick up my brother and me from our babysitter. When we got into my mother’s van, instantly we knew something was wrong. My father had passed away in the hospital right after his surgery, for what I knew was supposed to help him lose weight. He was determined to lose the weight, while taking the risk. I learned very quickly that life was very cruel. I had someone who was very dear to me ripped out of my life. I hardly knew my father. However, I essentially took over my father’s role. I watched over the family with protection and awareness, skipping any chance at a regular childhood.

Just like any event there is a cause and effect. My father’s death led to my mother being single, raising two boys, and working a full time job. Through this situation stress built up, not only on her, but on us as well. She managed her money very well, but even so, our family couldn’t afford what normal kids traditionally experienced and received. We got presents, but only once in a long while, because my mother fought to get them through her own determination to overcome her circumstances. We as a family learned to only get the necessities to survive. If we wanted something we had to earn it through work and hardship. I appreciated an action figure like a teenager appreciated a computer. These struggles birthed the realm of possibility for me. I looked at things differently than most minors would in their lifetimes.

By the summer of 2007, when I was seventeen years old, I ended up worse than my father had been. I weighed over 420 pounds. I looked at an obstacle I had to face. With the entire amount of struggles I had faced in the past, I knew some how I had to take this on; I had to lose weight. Honestly, my life depended on it. This determination I began to build struck an old fire with in me. I loved to wrestle, and with my passion for the sport I knew it was just what I needed to lose the weight. During my senior year of wrestling in high school I lost close to 90 pounds over all. Such a burden had been lifted.

Today I weigh around 305 pounds and I plan to wrestle for Bowling Green State University, as well as to continue to lose some more weight. However, I could not have gotten here if it wasn’t for my belief. I believe in determination, which means that no matter what you experience as far as struggles in your life, you can always overcome every battle you face by just saying, “I believe I can”. That’s what I always told myself through every struggle in my life. It brings me to tears every time I look at how far I have come and what struggles I have faced. This allows me to look at myself and state, “What ever struggles I may face from here on out, I will always tell myself, ‘I believe I can.’”