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What Spina Bifida means to me

Growing up with spina bifida has taught me so much. The strength I found through the struggles I encountered has changed me as a person. Throughout my childhood I have been relentlessly bullied over my walk and how my body functions, and for a while it had struck my

confidence and having that low self esteem so young was hard to deal with. But I knew to keep going and to be brave and most importantly not to give up. Although there were hard moments when I was younger where I would crack and break down crying asking God why he chose me to go through all of this, not understanding why I had to be the brave one. My mom told me when I was younger God gives his toughest battles to his strongest soldiers and that is something that's helped me through my most difficult times.

I think one of my hardest challenges was going through 30 surgeries by the age of 18 and missing out on school, friends and family events. Having to be bed ridden varying from weeks to months and unable to move or walk without assistance or someone having to care for me. It made me feel absolutely powerless. But having a lack of control in your life makes you more motivated to control whatever you can in your life. Although Spina Bifida can affect your learning capabilities, I worked the hardest on my grades. Trying to pass my classes in high school and keeping up with my work while I was out of school recovering from either being sick or another surgery. Despite all my challenges, I held two jobs during high school and

participated in band in high school.

Spina Bifida has and always will motivate me to be more and to do more with my life, like

getting a good education that will ensure a good and stable future for me. Growing up with spina bifida has given me the strength and character I would not otherwise have.

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