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I know I’m not God, and I know I’m not the Grim Reaper, but I can be the difference to somebody, and that’s what’s most important to me. I want to spend the rest of my life pursuing a career in the Medical field. That, in my eyes, is fulfillment.

I’ve seen and gone through many Medical experiences in my seventeen years of life, but there was one person’s particular experience that stood out the most to me; more than any of my own. I had a nephew named Dominic. He was born on August 5, 2005 – ten days before my little and only sister. He was born with an eye problem, and by the age of two, he had to have his eye removed and replaced by a glass eye. During this time, we began to notice little lumps on his neck, but when we addressed the issue to the doctor, he simply dismissed it as nothing to worry about. That was the same doctor that also never gave a clear explanation for his eye problems.

A few months passed, and that poor baby felt worse and worse. The lumps on his neck multiplied, so we took him to another doctor. This doctor floored us all when he delivered Dominic’s diagnosis: Dominic had cancer in his neck. And so as the months dragged on, he became more aware of what was happening to him. He spent the last year of his life with a brave spirit, wise beyond his years. He told me that he was going to meet God soon, and that everything was going to be okay… He soothed my family’s souls when we had no idea how we could ever soothe his. After his fourth birthday passed, he began to get worse. The cancer was spreading, and at that point, it was a waiting game.

I was into my first year of high school, and my quinceanera was coming up in the winter. My cousin Robert (Dominic’s father) came over one day in September and after having heard that Dominic could have had more time and maybe even beat cancer if the first doctor checked his lumps thoroughly was beyond me. I felt enraged, upset, and depressed. Time passed, and then came the night of my quinceanera. I traditionally did the waltz, the changing of the shoes, and the surprise dance, but when it came to my thank you speech, the mood in the room was different. My family’s faces changed from proud smiles to thoughtful grins. There was a sadness in everyone’s eyes, and I was confused. When I was done, I left the podium and tried to socialize with my relatives. It seemed like everyone was avoiding me. Soon I found my cousin Lalis, and then in that moment is when I heard the news: Dominic had died about a half hour before my speech. My world had stopped. I sat in shock for an hour as my ball fell apart; and it didn’t matter that my make-up was ruined by the flowing tears or that my fake eyelashes may have stained my expensive white dress, because all I could think of was that little boy telling me that everything would be okay. He died December 26, 2009.

After his funeral a week later, I returned to school entering a fresh semester. My new class was Health. My sadness was comforted only by my increasing curiosity and wonder of the workings of the human body. I found a love for the anatomy of humans. My world was moving again. I knew then how I wanted to spend the rest of my life. I want to be a doctor. I want to help, if not save kids like Dominic who could have had a chance. I know I’m not God, and I know I’m not the Grim Reaper, but I can be the difference to somebody, and that’s what’s most important to me.



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