I Believe in Strength

Malin - Morristown, Indiana
Entered on December 8, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30
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This I Believe

I believe in strength. Not the kind of physical power that most guys will flaunt in a desperate attempt for attention. It’s deeper than that. I believe in the mental and emotional strength. The strength that gets you from one day to another. The kind that helps you to overcome obstacles in your life and come out a stronger and better person. I remember switching high schools my sophomore year. I was a cheerleader at Lawrence North and making friends was never a problem for me. There were 4,500 kids at that school, and I was two months into my sophomore year when we moved and I was enrolled at Eastern Hancock. There were a total of 350 people if that tells you anything. Nobody there knew me; but they didn’t care, they didn’t want to know me. I remember the names the girls called me when I walked through the halls. The way you see done in movies, but always think to yourself “girls don’t really act like that in high school.” I remember coming home crying ever day. I had so many absences that I would lose the credits for all my classes if I missed even one more class. In that same year, my mom was diagnosed with metastasizing breast cancer, the most advanced stage that spreads rapidly to other parts of your body. The long days of chemotherapy made her sick, and made me sick that I couldn’t miss school to be there with her. I remember coming home to her crying because she was in so much pain, and because she woke up that morning with most of her hair on her pillow. She had three surgeries to try and get rid of the tumor before she finally had a full mastectomy. When school was out, I never returned for my junior year. I couldn’t face up to the people that made my life hell, so instead, I took my classes online. I spent that year taking care of my mom, and I still can’t believe how much I learned about her. We were never very close, but these unfortunate events brought us closer. She was so strong through it all and never once asked, “Why me?” My senior year I decided to put everything behind me. I went back to school and had probably my best year ever. As for my mom, her strength through all of this still allows her to fight every day and try to beat this disease. Yes, I believe in strength. Strength is what gets me through each day, good or bad. I believe strength is the backbone to every positive outcome.