Hero | Teen Ink


October 16, 2008
By Anonymous

This is the story of a true hero. Not one that flies around in spandex and saves people from bizarre and horrifying creatures, but one who really fought. Physically, psychologically, and emotionally, battled through miserable and terrifying barriers. This story doesn’t have your stereotypical happy ending; it ends, but that’s just it. It ends. No "happily ever after." ...No ever after at all. But it is a story that needs to be told. A story that needs to be heard. And a story of a little boy who will be remembered, Written by a not-so-little girl, looking up to her real-life super hero.
The story...

The story starts with your average girl, coming home from an average day of school, and receiving some unexpected news. This story, of course, starts with me; in fourth grade. I just found out that my then-two-year-old cousin Max was diagnosed with leukemia. I remembered hearing that Max hadn’t been feeling well lately, and I had just recently gotten back from a vacation with him. Even though I guess I knew something was up, I could never have imagined something like this. When I found out I was worried sick, scared, and sad. Truth is, I'm not exactly sure what that feeling was. I guess it was just sort of caring. But it was tough. I thought of what he must be going through and I felt selfish for being sad, because if anyone should have had those feelings, he had a good reason. But I couldn’t help but claim them after they had been rejected by Max. He had chosen to be brave-- instead of to sit around feeling sorry; however easy it was.

But even with his strength and determination, Max just couldn’t seem to catch a break. After his original diagnosis, the doctors declared the discoveries of several tumors. It seemed like our hero might crack, but alas-- he was even stronger. He fought it out-- trying to defy all odds, standing steadfast and strong to the 'if you can dream it, you can do it!' theory.

Since I had known him, Max loved everything to do with Spiderman. He would eat Spiderman Pop Tarts and run around shooting imaginary webs at everything; until of course his spidey fuel ran out: time for Pop Tarts, round #2! In short, one hero was linked to the other inseparably. If someone mentioned Spiderman, Max came to mind; and vise-versa.

I still wish I could have that kind of determination and will. I can't imagine the strength required. But looking back, I see that I chose the easy way. The selfish way. The seemingly justifiable position of doing absolutely nothing while someone close to me suffered.

It's amazing that one single person, in such a short span of time, could change a whole host of people's lives permanently.
But heroes can often do that.

R.I.P. Maxwell

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This article has 1 comment.

Pacwerdna said...
on Sep. 22 2010 at 10:05 am
First off, I'm sorry for your loss. Second, the message in this story was very strong, but you didn't need any of the stuff from the first paragraph and half of the telling. It would have been stronger if you had started with Max's love for Spiderman, and then told us the news of his leukemia.

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