Everyday is like living in a challenge for me. I have a disability, and many times it gets very hard to live a normal life. Everyone thinks that I am a happy person, which I am but they don’t see the reality of my situation. However, that doesn’t stop me from being me. I am the girl that will still do drama club despite having to make a lot of accommodations. I am a friend to all and will do anything in my power to make my friends feel loved. I am the girl who will forever have a devotion to music like no other. I am also courageous. Courage is a big word and can have different meanings and interpretations. The challenges I have faced throughout the years are what make me courageous. Having courage doesn’t just mean to be brave, it means to push through challenges and still smile for everyone. I have survived 8 surgeries on my back due to scoliosis. Currently I am receiving a medication used in treating Spinal Muscular Atrophy, a rare neuromuscular disorder, which is inserted directly into my spinal cord called, Spinraza, to help with my disability. I believe I am STRONG. Strength defeats everything. The strength to get into honors classes. The strength to be successful so my parents will be proud of me. The strength to be there for my friends, and the strength to never give up. Giving up isn’t an option for me. When I set my mind to do something I will not stop until I reach that goal. Facing multiple challenges while also having strength has earned me a Recognition Award from Middlesex County and a Leadership and Self-Advocacy Award from the State of New Jersey Department of Education. I couldn’t be any prouder of myself. I will continue to blossom into the person I’ve become because maybe one day, I’ll be a role model to someone. Everything I do, I do it for myself and my family but I also do it so one day someone can read my name and remember me as the person they looked up to. My parents are proud of me and they even call me the leader of my life. I wouldn’t have it any other way. No matter how bad the situation I’m in is, I never let it get to me. There is always something good in life, sometimes it’s just really hard to find what it is. Having a positive attitude is something my friends always say I have. Why not have a positive attitude? Someone might have problems at home or are going through a very difficult time but being positive always turns the situation around. I have a difficult life. There are times when all I want to do is scream and cry but instead I hang out with people who love me so I can remind myself that life is beautiful. I’m glad I can share my story with you and hope that in some way I could have inspired you.