Never Too Late

Shakira - Manchester, Michigan
Entered on April 21, 2009
Age Group: 18 - 30
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Peering through the outlined glass, the thin rays of light shine upon a lonely tree sprouting its new set of leaves. My body glides in motion syncing to the beats filtering through the canals as my mind escapes me. Sweat permeates the soft skin filling my veins full of passion, desire, determination and will. My life, radiant of many colors, clouded by a thin layer of fog that lies above the air takes me through this story.

My eyes flash into the dark room that shines a large circular light onto a protruding sphere draped in blue that lay upon the covered table. Rubber gloves suction the warmth to my hands gripping a small, round sharp object. With the first cut my scalpel slides into her soft, stretched flesh creating a steady stream of deep red blood flowing down her natural curve. Heat surrounds my hands as they reach into the depths of the open cavity to grasp a tiny bottom, wrapping my fingers around his limp neck and sliding him out of the darkness. Covered in bloody tissue, eyes matted shut, a cry of the first breath soars from his tiny lungs. Naked he rests on her chest. In a twitch he scoots to lay his tiny soft lips upon her breast, drawing milk from within her being. He pauses in that dark warm place of her neck to find comfort. This place reminds him of the fluid filled sac where he laid to rest for nine months. Arms gently cuddle him as tears of joy and relief roll down her rosy cheeks. A new life has just entered into a world that can be very harsh and unspoken.

As I reminisce in this image that has flashed my eyes, I realize that it is never too late to pursue my dreams. I may be a professional student by the time I get what I want, but I am building the life for me, that I want to build. The long road I have travelled and the many degrees I have earned I can still be what I want to be. As a child I said I would grow up to be a Pediatrician. I excelled in the sciences and I found myself interested in what was being discovered, but my life took a different turn when my grandfather placed an alto saxophone into my hands. I dedicated my life to music for 17 years, learning all that I could. In the last 6 years I uncovered yet another hidden passion, dance. I put all of my energy into creating, understanding and performing dance through many cultures. I still was not satisfied.

At this point in my life I never knew that my heart could be split, with passion for two different areas of interest. I finished my bachelors and wondered what adventure I would face in the path of my life. Where would life take me now? I auditioned for graduate schools in New York and California, but opportunities did not seem to line up. I decided to take a year off to work full time in my technology position that I had already held for 4 years. In this year off I searched my soul, trying to figure out the next step in my life. No matter how hard I tried to figure it out, there was no flashing sign showing me which direction to take. As I sat at work researching graduate schools I found myself yearning for a piece of medicine that had been omitted from my life for many years. I knew that paying for another degree was out of the question, so I began to research other options, assistantships, scholarships, etc. Within 2 weeks I was offered a full ride into the Kinesiology department at Bowling Green State University. Finally, a sign was given to me, but attached to it was mixed feelings. I was torn, I did not want to stay in Bowling Green any longer, yet this was an opportunity for me to get closer to what I really wanted out of my life.

I began my first semester in graduate school taking advantage of every opportunity that I could. I was sitting in my Exercise Physiology class taking diligent notes and loving the topic I was learning about, the cardiovascular system. As the professor stated that learning this information would make or break some students due to its difficulty, I took that as a challenge. I would know this information inside and out. This day is the day I realized that my heart belonged to medicine. I fought with myself in telling myself, you are 26 years old with 2 degrees and another on the way, it is too late for you to go to medical school for 4 years and residency for another 4-6 years. I convinced myself that it was too late to start on a dream that should have been started sooner. Until I had a deep conversation with one of my professors I did not realize that it is not too late to follow my heart. From that day forward I began researching medical schools and areas of specialties. I even did some shadowing in the fields that I took an interest too. I committed to this journey that would mold the rest of my life. I found my true niche that would last a lifetime. Today I sit in my science classes reflecting upon my life. If I would have believed it was too late I would not be here today creating the life I have always wanted. I believe that it is never too late to pursue your dreams and I am living proof.