The Lights of My Life
Everyone has numerous roles they play in life. The roles I play “send light to people in darkness,” while for me, it’s just what I love to do. The roles I play are best quoted from a close family friend and her family, “Her role is comforter, supporter, friend, evangelist, sisterhood, etc., in our lives and we love her for it.” These roles, along with others, are very important and I take all my roles very seriously.
The role of playing myself is played simple. I am a child of God and try to act as such. People have said I am such an inspiration to be around because I am “always looking ahead to see what I should be doing, always smiling, and always willing to help others.” Examples of this include planning to help with food drives, fundraisers, or other means of assisting. I love to help, not for credit or praise, but because I know I’d like the help if I needed it and because it’s the neighborly thing to do; it makes my heart feel warm and happy.
In the role of friendship, I do almost anything for my friends. Most of my friends have said they know that I am always there for them when they have a problem and I always support them. One friend in high school, Tamika Thomas, said I was a good friend and supporter because in high school, I happily supported her when she ran for vice president of our class, by taking time out of my day to make signs and basically campaign for her.
The role I play in family is very important. My family has said I’m very loving and involved in family activities. When the family gets together, I always try to help out, whether it be with cooking or entertaining the kids, I’ll do it. They have also said that I have a great amount of determination; anytime I was told I couldn’t do something, I proved them wrong. A perfect example of my determination is: when I was an infant, my arms were pretty weak and my mom thought I couldn’t hold my bottle; instead of using my arms, I used my feet to hold up the bottle.
Some people have said two other roles, I play are natural born leader and special needs advocate, because of my “strong character, determination and dedication to personal and community causes that better our society, the confidence and tenacity to make a stand on behalf of those who cannot represent themselves, and looking past disorders and disabilities and loving people for who they are.” A perfect example of this caring and devotion to charity and special needs children is when I go spend time with a little girl with spinal muscular atrophy named Julia Ortego. Julia always smiles when I go visit and says, “I am her best friend and her big sister.” which makes me smile, knowing that I’m making her life as happy as it can be, despite her disability and limited life prognosis.
Another example of this dedication toward special needs and community causes is when I work at the summer day camp for special needs children; even though due to my disabilities, I didn’t get paid to work and had to volunteer, due to my limitations of my disability and the parks and rec people worried about liability; I still work there because I was a camper there once and I felt it’s time I give back to the new generation of campers now attending, plus who better to help the abled-bodied campers “get into the mindset of the campers,” than a former camper?
These roles I play are very important and I take them seriously. The roles I play “send light to people in darkness,” while for me, it’s just what I love to do. I love to help and make everyone happy as best I can. If I see someone depressed or sad, it makes my heart sad. My roles are what paint my world and make me who I am, a small girl in a big world trying to make a difference.
Now in 2023, I want to speak to anyone reading this:
“Life is hard sometimes, it isn’t always sunshine and rainbows, puppies, cupcakes, and unicorns; It does get hard. There are times where you feel discouraged, sad, hopeless, guilt, like you don’t matter or that you have no reason to live, I am here to tell you to not listen to those feelings. While it is okay to acknowledge these feelings and know they exist, know that they are lies; not necessarily the feelings of sadness or anger or hurt or any of that, the lies are the feelings of you have no reason to live, no purpose, that you don’t matter. Those are the lies.
I am here to tell you that as someone who suffered with disabilities as well as bullying because of those disabilities, I know those feelings. I know what it is like to think I won’t have much of a life because of the pain, “How can I hold down a job and contribute to society if I have to live on pain meds just to not want to rip out my spinal column?” “No one is going to want to hire someone who has to take so many sick days,”
or let’s take a trip down the road of Marriage or being a parent: “I know if I get married, I lose my SSI benefits, my fiancé shouldn’t have to support me completely and then private insurance is so expensive and Cost of living keeps going up, maybe I should just end our engagement and save the stress, no..we both love each other. Maybe we just not get married.”
or parenting: “I want to be a parent, but my any biological kids would get my disabilities as they can be hereditary, I don’t want to put that cross on them too.”, “even if I adopt, they still might be disabled because that’s a lot of who are in the system when I look,” “even if they aren’t disabled, they’d get made fun of because their mom is a “freak”, “I could always home-school, but then they wouldn’t get the socialization aspect.”
There will always be worry and fear of the unknown, and the more we worry, the more we humans spiral down that dark hole of despair. I have come to realize that the best thing to do when feeling that way is to go do something to let those emotions out healthily whether it be a hobby you enjoy, going watch a movie or listening to music, journaling, going to therapy, faith, do something to get out of your head and remember to count your blessings: People who care about you, the good days, etc.
But always remember, Everyone has something they can contribute to society, you just have to dig deep down sometimes to find it, but it is there! Never give up!