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Breaking Down My Barrier

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As I’m lying in the chair, tired from the medicine I have just been given, I turn on the television and begin to watch a World War 2 documentary. Listening to the stories of veterans, the battles they have been through and the scars they have, I ask myself, “What scars has this battle given me?”

Before I was sick and diagnosed, I was athletic and an all around happy teen. I had a lot of things going for me. I played football and lacrosse. Coaches told me that I was going to be one of the stars of their teams, and that I was a huge part of their program. I also was going to be a lead role in the school play for my first year. But this would all change.

When I first got diagnosed, my illness took me over physically and mentally. I couldn’t control it. The medicine the doctors prescribed wasn’t helping, and I started to become depressed. I couldn’t play football or lacrosse if I couldn’t control the illness and school work was becoming harder and harder to keep up with. I was just waiting for the day to come when I magically got better.

Then that magic happened. I didn’t wake up one day and it was all better, rather it came from some advice given to me by my therapist. At my last session with him ever, I asked him before I left if he had any last minute advice. All he said was, “Don’t let your illness control you, especially when you can control it.” I said thank you before leaving his office. A couple days later, I realized what my doctor meant. I had to make an effort to get better. The next day I woke up as early as I could, went to school, and pushed myself through the whole day. I even went to football practice. Ever since then I made an effort to conquer my illness. I tried to control it and not let it control me. But then it started to get worse, again.

The medicine wasn’t working and the test they took showed that my colon was only getting worse. I started to feel as though there was no point in even trying to help myself. But my parents kept faith in the doctors. I’m glad they did too because the doctors had one more trick up their sleeve. They started me on this new medicine that was very dangerous, but it could help me if it worked. We wouldn’t know how successful the treatments could be. Trusting my doctor’s opinion, I went to the hospital a few days later and started the infusion. Soon enough it started working and I started over again. I went home and even though I never felt any changes right away, in a matter of an hour I could feel the effects of my new medicine. I was able to play outside without having to run inside sick, and I could go a whole day in school without having any issues. I didn’t want to sleep all the time, rather I had enough energy to put effort into my homework without just wanting to fall asleep. After feeling all these changes, a tremendous weight came off my shoulder in my academics and in the pressure I felt while playing sports.

I began to think more optimistically and continued to push myself through school and sports. I started varsity on the lacrosse team and started to get my grades up to back where they used to be. Ever since I learned that lesson from my therapist, my illness has acted up, but I have never let it hold me back from doing the things in life that I enjoy doing.

As I sat in that hospital chair, I realized how many scars I would have if I could open up my body and show everyone the damage my illness, also known as ulcerative colitis, has given me. I know for a fact I would be glad to show them off because I have learned a lesson that I will never forget. Every man faces adversity, but what makes the man is how he faces that adversity. I faced this adversity with as much positive attitude as I possibly could and I am going to continue my positive attitude for the rest of my life no matter what challenges lay ahead.





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Chucky said...
Nov. 8, 2011 at 3:58 pm

WOW! :) I am so proud of your accomplishment. If you keep going this way, with that positive mindset of yours, i'm sure you'll accomplish even greater things in life.

Good luck!

 
jeffn94 replied...
Nov. 8, 2011 at 4:27 pm
hey thanks alot!  means alot to hear that, i appreciate it
 
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