Click For Hope

Suicide

I then heard the sound of firecrackers

Orphan, Clickforhope, Depression, Suicide, LossJasmine Lopez8 Comments
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Sensitive Content. Please be advised.

Please share your story.: I was born and raised in Gary, Indiana. The third child of five siblings. My mother and father always helped others even though money was always a major issue due to both of them being addicted to crack cocaine.
I was 11 years old, asleep in my bed. One Monday morning, there was a knock on the door which woke me up at around 5:30am. I remember my father waking up to answer the door, it was someone he knew, which was a "buddy" who came over extremely early to get some money from the friend my parents allowed to live with us until he got on his feet. My dad let him in, the "buddy" went to the room where the friend was staying and demanded his money. The friend told the "buddy" he didn't have the money, but would get it to him as soon as he got it. Well of course the "buddy" wasn't happy and as I lay in bed I heard him say to my dad, "Let me take your television until he comes up with my money." My dad told him, "No, you can't take my TV, I don't have anything to do with this and it's time for you to leave, because my kids have to get up for school in a few minutes." I heard foot steps toward the door past my bedroom and I heard my father say to the "buddy" it was time to go. The door opens and I then heard the sound of firecrackers ( as a child this was the only logical explanation). I then heard my dad run close to my bedroom door and I heard even more firecrackers. I heard my mom calling my dad's name and she ran in my bedroom which was right next to where my dad was.  She came into my bedroom where she put her back against the door and pressed the heel of her foot against my bedroom door and told me not to get up from the bed. The "buddy" was shooting at her through the door. Then he quickly ran from the house, and heard loud screeching tires. Mom and I got up and went to the kitchen where my dad was laying on the floor in a pool of blood, he had been shot 9 times. We had to step over his body in order to get out of the house and ran to a neighbor's house to call 911 because we didn't have a home phone. Shortly after the call the coroners showed up and pronounced dad dead.

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My mother took this very hard and started drinking just about everyday. She'd cry in the kitchen almost everyday finding a spot of dad's blood that was missed during the clean up process. I always tried to comfort her. About one year later, my mom came home from being in the streets and asked me to bring her a glass of water so that she could take her medicine. I was sitting in the living room at about 9pm struggling with my homework from school and looked at her and said "Ma, I'm trying to do my homework I don't understand it". She told me no not bring the water that she'd get it herself and she did. I sat and watched her take her medicine. The next morning my sister and I were getting ready for school and on our way out the door to walk to school, I turned to my sister and told her that I needed to ask mom for some money. Deep down I knew she didn't have any, but there was an urge just to go ask anyway. I did, and I patted my mom to wake up because she was still asleep. I then shook her, no response. I shook her even harder, no response. I then took my mom's right arm and placed it under her back and raised her in a sitting position. I immediately moved it, to realize my mom was dead. She had taken her medication the night before and died. She had taken her life. I backed up in the room and hit the wall behind me, and stared at her for a few minutes. I ran to tell my sister, who was still waiting outside for me, so we could walk to school. Again the coroner came to our house for a second time, and this time it was for my mom.

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How has your story shaped who you are today?: My story has given me the strength to live life with purpose and courage. It has taught me that no matter what you have to walk through in life, you can make it. If I can make it anyone can! My motivations for graduating high school and college were growing up with little to nothing, this made me want "more" out of life. I currently work with Psychiatrists, helping children who are in the system with foster parents and are experiencing similar situations like I did as a child. Now life is tremendously better, I'm happy with a loving spouse and three wonderful boys of my own. My family and encouraging others are my ultimate motivations.

What compelled you to share your story with us?: I was compelled to share my story, because I realize that there may be other children who may be currently experiencing something similar, and I want them to know they are not alone.

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What encouraging words would you give to someone who shares a similar story?: Don't give up on life because those who were suppose to nurture and protect you were taken away so soon. Your life is a gift and you can make it through this, I know it hurts, and I know you're angry but it will get better. Just take one day at a time. God is there and he'll never, ever leave or forsake you, I'm living proof.

"I KNOW YOU WANT THIS..."

Breaking the Silence, Rape, PTSD, SuicideJasmine Lopez2 Comments
 Makeup:  Jacqueline Gamache  Styled by:  Co Chic Styling  Photos:  Jazi Photo

Makeup: Jacqueline Gamache Styled by: Co Chic Styling Photos: Jazi Photo

Please share your story:

It was my freshman year at the University of Iowa. My first year living away from my family. I shared a dorm room with two best friends from a small town in Iowa. We were very different people, but, still managed to enjoy being roommates. Being from Iowa, they often had friends from their home town come visit. It had never been an issue as they all usually went out at night together leaving me in the quiet of our room. One night, after having gone to sleep, and while they were all out partying, there was a knock on the dorm room door. Before opening it I asked who it was. I knew one of the guys who happened to be my roommates' friend, and had met on numerous occasions. He and his friend wanted to wait in the room for my roommates to return. They had been out partying and had had too much to drink, so just wanted to lay down.

The friend I knew immediately passed out on my roommates bed. I laid back down in my bed to try to get back to sleep. Next thing I know there is a weight on top of me. The other friend was laying on top of me and put his hand over my mouth so I couldn't yell out. He said, "I know you want this and it will be good for both of us". He proceeded to rape me, then got up and left, while the other friend was still passed out. I never knew the name of the person who raped me and didn't tell anyone the next day or even over the next year what had happened, in fact, I completely wiped it out of my memory.
ย 

For the next year I felt horrible about myself and had no idea why. I broke up with someone I had had a 2 year relationship with. I would cry at the drop of a hat. I started to not feel worthy of others' attention and withdrew a bit. I would take long walks at night hoping something bad would happen to me just so I could have something to tie to all of my negative feelings about myself. Because I had blocked the memory of the rape, I was lost and had no understanding why I didn't like myself at all.

About a year after the rape, I was feeling so low. I still had no understanding of why I didn't like myself. I became very depressed. I think on the outside people had no idea as I had always been a happy, bubbly person and tried to continue that persona around my friends. But, it was killing me inside. One night, I was done with feeling miserable and decided to commit suicide. I took a bunch of pills and called my family to say goodbye. My mom realized something was extremely wrong and got a hold of my brother who was also at U of I. He contacted 911 and had me taken to the hospital.

Oddly enough it was while I was vomiting up those pills at the hospital that I started remembering all of the details of the rape. Those memories, strangely enough, were a relief to me. I finally understood why I had fallen so deeply into the depressed state I was in. This gave me the ability to begin to heal. I saw a therapist who helped me understand that the rape was not my fault. However, I also went to a psychiatrist who told me that the rape is in the past and I need to forget about it and move on with my life (essentially snap out of it). I had repressed those memories for a year and now he wanted me to repress them again. I was mortified. I told him what he "wanted" to hear to get out of his office and move on with my therapy and life and never saw him again.

Has it been easy?!? No. Sometimes I find myself making horrible life choices due to still having some of the feelings of not being good enough, or, not feeling like I am worthy of love. I also have had many issues with intimacy. This can be hard for my husband who is a very understanding person. I don't always like to be touched. It has been about 30 years since the rape occurred, and, I am happy to say I survived.

How has your story shaped who you are today?:

My story has changed me in the fact that I understand and empathize with others who are going through issues in their lives. I am a support group leader for Alopecia Areata and feel that my past experiences have made me want to reach out and be there for my group. I am one of the first ones to say, "your story is your story and your hurt is your hurt, don't let anyone tell you it shouldn't bother you".

What compelled you to share your story?: I want others to know there is life beyond rape.

What encouraging words would you give to someone who shares a similar story?:

My therapist once said "depression is like being in a dirt hole. No matter how often you try to claw your way out the dirt, it just gives way and you make no headway". Accept someone's ladder into that hole and let them help you pull yourself out. Life is worth living once you can see the sun outside of that dirt hole.

I ENDED UP BROKEN AT A VERY YOUNG AGE

Abuse, Breaking the Silence, PTSD, Sexual Abuse, SuicideJasmine Lopez4 Comments
 Photos by: Vivian Sinya Productions

Photos by: Vivian Sinya Productions

Please share your story: : I was seven years old when I attempted to help my first wounded animal. Being the nature lover that I am, at six years old on a breezy spring day I discovered a robin with a broken leg, tangled in a pop divider. I urgently tried to help the helpless bird break free. I will never forget that moment when my father and I did just that, and will never forget the moment God helped me to do that very same thing on my own. We all end up broken at one time or another, and unfortunately I ended up broken at a very young age at the hands of my abuser. Growing up no one ever suspected a thing because I hid it so well, and covered it with an infectious smile, that my parents couldn't even tell the difference. It was a secret of indescribable pain that I was going to take to the grave with me, because I didn't want to admit that someone I knew, trusted, and loved had sexually tarnished me. It's not an easy thing to come to terms with on your own, and then you grow older and the wound grows bigger and bigger as you continue to cover it with the same bandage until one day, God steps in. 

That day was a Saturday in 2007, my senior year of high school, as I sat in my parents room getting my hair brushed by my mom. One situation led to God opening up the truth about the daughter my mom thought she knew, and all I can remember is going into complete shock as the words fell from my mouth. The world turned black and the tarnishing moments began to replay in my head so fiercely as if they'd happened that day. My body was a limp leaf that was uncontrollably shaking, my mother was yelling out for my father to come into the room, and for such a fast moment, it felt like a scene in slow motion.

Fast forward to 2014, after the interviews, medical checks, and the court dates I skipped out on because I couldn't face him... I was informed he'd be released soon. Talk about your world shaking again after years of trying to get past the crap you buried for so long. The year of 2014 was my hell. I drank all of the time, was diagnosed with PTSD, stopped my career, cut out my family and friends, made decisions that could have caused a lot of trouble in my life...I hit rock bottom. Every single day I slept, I wept, and when I did make it out I wanted to jump in front of a bus. My mind, and spirit had been completely broken and one night I decided that it was the night I was going to die. I wrote my suicide note. I remember crying to God, yelling at Him, so angry that it had to come to that point. Then my phone rang. I will never forget this moment as long as I live, it was my co-worker calling for the 100th time telling me I am loved and that everything was going to be okay. It was God's last attempt to get through to me, and I answered. Out of all the texts and calls this girl bugged me with that I had ignored, I answered. She was at my apartment within minutes and that was the day, I for the first time, in my life, started to heal. 

Two years later, after counseling, facing my demons, getting back in church, and creating new music, I am SO THANKFUL to be living for the first time ever in my life. Though it took a lot of breakthrough, broken decisions, and much more to get here, I'm here and ready to help others live a life of abundance.

How has your story shaped who you are today?: It makes me everything that I am. The strong, resilient, gracious, and understanding woman has always been inside of me, but after everything I've seen, I can really say those qualities breathe truth throughout my life.

What compelled you to share your story with us?: 

I believe this story will speak to your viewers who may be feeling the need to hide their brokenness. I hold the banner for the broken, beautiful and want to see people set free from their bondage of anxiety, depression, addiction, and secrets. I truly know if this story is selected it will help in a way do just that.

What encouraging words would you give to someone who shares a similar story?: 

You were created to live a beautiful life beyond the pain. Pain is real and your feelings are valid but don't settle there and give up. FIGHT. Surround yourself with solid people that will love you through each and every crack, and allow yourself to heal in your valley. It's there you discover who you truly are. It's there you discover who God truly is. He does not sit by while you suffer, he is there in the depths of what seems like endless sorrow. Let him in, and I promise you healing will flood your soul. Lastly, know that you are SO LOVED and cherished on this earth, even by a stranger like me.

I KNEW HE WAS DANGEROUS...

Breaking the Silence, Suicide, Depression, Abuse, Sexual Abuse, RapeJasmine Lopez1 Comment
 Photos by:  Jazi Photo  Makeup by: Ashley Vela

Photos by: Jazi Photo Makeup by: Ashley Vela

Please share your story: :

 I do not remember how young I was when it first started, but I do know that I was quite young. I only have a few memories of actually being molested as a child, because I repressed the memories. I mainly remember the times I lied to get away because I knew he was dangerous, but I loved him because he was family. I was conflicted, but I knew he was not safe, and I would do anything to make sure we were not alone together in the same room. I remember when I was around 10, he grabbed me and I was finally strong enough to pull away and run away. I ran to another room, and closed the door crying and saying "I got away today", but at the same time not understanding why I did not want to be alone with him. It was so confusing to me. When I was fourteen and I was a freshman in high school, a group of senior guys were goofing off in the crowded hallways and they thought it would be funny to circle me. They had me trapped and reached out and started grabbing me and touching me and I freaked out. It was a few months later when I had nightmares about them and I acknowledged what they had done was wrong. As I was dealing with those emotions, the memories from my childhood came back full force. It became a burden as I kept the secret from my parents because I felt like I would not be believed because of who the person was in my family. I clung to the Lord during that time, but it was overwhelming for me and I did not have the best counseling at the time.

When I was sixteen, I started dating a guy, but it turned into a very controlling relationship. He had a bunch of crazy rules, and for some reason I kept going in the relationship despite these vivid warning signs. A few months into the relationship, he showed up at my job while I was working alone, and I was happy to see him, but he ended up raping me. It would have gotten even worse, but I believe the Lord allowed a customer to ring the front bell and stop him. I had frozen, I could not say no to him, because I reverted back to the little girl in my mind. I know that I was praying for it to be over and for me to get away. I also remember at one point seeing the back door and thinking "I need to go out that door...I need to leave and get away from him, but I can't...because this is my job...I can't leave...I'm stuck here...how do I get him to leave...Lord help me". This was a controlling relationship too, I was also scared to make him angry. I remember after I helped the customer, I went to the back room, and tried to put on a happy face, and he was so angry with me. He stomped out, and I kept smiling until he left then I fell to the floor crying. I was so scared because I thought I was the one who was wrong. I knew I could not let anyone know because I had just come back from a mission trip and they would think that I was bad. I locked up and went to my best friend's house and I never told her what happened. That night changed me. 

My relationship with God changed, how I viewed myself changed (which was already tenuous from severe bullying in junior high). I was still a Christian, but I was so angry with God. I felt like He left me that night. I still played the part, but inside I was so broken and did not know how to put it together again. I had an older friend who was such a blessing to my life. A few weeks after that night, she walked in while he was arguing with me and he had grabbed my wrist forcefully. As soon as she came in, he dropped my wrist and pretended everything was good and then left. She looked at me and took me to her car to talk privately. I confessed to her about the abuse, but I still never told her about that night. She handed me her cell phone and told me to call him and break up. I did, even though he started spreading rumors which attacked my reputation, and they were all lies. The more I tried to defend myself (as teens do), he would make up more and more lies until I stopped talking to my friends. One thing I understand now and I did not understand then, was that all of my childhood memories came back full force because I had to deal with the anger I had towards God. I had felt that my childhood molestation was now my fault too. 

This made me desire to leave the state for college. I needed to get away, and I needed a change of scenery and I thought going to an out of state college would give me that. This is when I started realizing that I was so afraid of being raped in college. I started having some fears come out, and I sank into deep depression and became suicidal. I even attempted one time, but the Lord graciously saved me. I was a mess and all over the place. I reached out for counseling, but without the repressed memories coming forth, they were not able to help me. They put me on anti-depressants and they did not work. In some ways I felt like they made me worse. The side effects were horrible and made me feel like I was going crazy. Even though I was in a Bible college, I felt so far away from God and I could not understand why. I would see others and feel like God was not happy with me and that I was not worthy of Him. I remember crying out to Him over and over yelling "Can you hear me??" Meanwhile I was teaching Sunday school and showing the world I was still the "good little Christian girl". The depression got worse and worse to the point I could not function and I was becoming suicidal again. I even began cutting, I literally felt like I was going crazy. I remember walking by the side of the highway in three feet of snow at 2 am and thinking I should just jump in front of the trucks because living life as a crazy person was not worth it. My world was so dark that light did not even seem like it was a possibility. Then I came back to Chicago to be admitted to a Mental Hospital. 

Once back in Chicago the hospital would not accept me because I did not have insurance at the time. I ended up staying with my friend and her husband, and this was the biggest blessing to me. I was able to just stop for a while. While I was there, my medication ran out and I did not have a doctor in Chicago to renew the prescriptions. I was nervous because of the dosages I was on made it dangerous for me to stop them cold-turkey but I had no other options. I had no side effects, and in fact, I started doing better and it became clear that my issues were not chemical imbalances. I slowly started coming out of my depressive fog and back to the Lord, and realizing that He had never left my side during the darkness. He was always there. I just took life one day at a time from there, but I would slip into depression periodically. I knew there were parts of my heart that I knew were there, but I did not know how to access them. While I was back with the Lord, my relationship was still different. I felt like I had to perform for Him, and and that I needed to do everything right. In my head, I knew that it was illogical, but I could not change my heart. I would talk to friends, and pastors about it because I was desperate for help to change it. I would tell them that the distance from my head to my heart was a very long way. I still dealt with horrible anxiety and fear of being raped. I was afraid to live alone because I felt that I would never be safe. I was even afraid to stay home alone when my parents were away. I went to counseling, but it was not helping either.

One day in November 2011 (about 2 years into the counseling), I went to church for early morning prayer. I told the Lord that I had enough of this and that I was ready for Him to deal with it because I did not know what else to do. I remember telling Him that He had permission to open the closed doors of my heart and to deal with stuff that I didn'teven know was there. The next night at my counseling session, my counselor asked me about my boyfriends. I counted off the relationships (which were few), and in my head I knew that there should be five but I could only remember four names, and two of those guys I dated for like one day and really did not count. We just started talking and offhandedly I said a name and she looked at me and said "who?" I looked at her and was like "I didn't tell you about ***?" She said "No". So I started telling her and all of the sudden I was telling her about that night at my job. As I told her I remember looking at her and saying "Oh my God, he raped me". With that it was like the floodgates opened and the memories came back in vivid color with emotions and feelings as if it had just happened the day before.

The following two years were some of the most difficult years as I dealt with, not only the rape but my childhood as well. I am so thankful for the friends and the support I had around me at the time, and of course for God's love. While the memories were so difficult to deal with, I cannot begin to tell you the freedom that came from allowing God to go to those dark places. My relationship with God is so beautiful now. I can finally see myself as He sees me, as His precious daughter whom He loves and cherishes. There is freedom in telling your story. It gives you back the power that was taken from you. I now control who I tell and when. This is my first time sharing the story publicly, but I knew that it was time. Those men no longer have anything to say over me. I remember telling people that there has to be a reason for me going through this, if I can someday help just one person, then all of this pain was worth it. If I can save one girl from being abused, then it is worth it. If I can help one woman heal, it was worth it.

I am telling you, that it was worth it to share my story!

I can't end it there though....I need to share that I have many reasons for my weight gain, for health conditions which contributed, emotional eating etc.It definitely became my comfort during the years of the pain I held deep inside. It is still a struggle that I have, and is very difficult for me. Because along with what I mentioned, it has become a shield to protect me from unwanted advances. As I have gone through times when I've lost a little weight, something will happen to make me want to have that shield back up. I believe that this will be the final step to my healing, to conquer this wall and break this shield, and I am nearly there. I needed to mention it in my story because it is something I rarely share. God will be with me along the way and I know this battle will eventually be won. God has more than restored the years that the locust have stolen, and I am blessed beyond comprehension. 

How has your story shaped who you are today?: 

I am who I am because of what happened to me, and what I went through. I am no longer fearful of my own shadow, but I am growing stronger each and every day. I am growing bolder, and standing up for others. I am compassionate because I know what it is like to be alone. I feel like I can help others because I understand the emotions and the feelings even if my story may be different than theirs. Jeremiah 29:11-13 says "For I know the plans I have for you,โ€ declares the Lord, โ€œplans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart." This has been my story. I have been seeking Him, and I have been finding Him. I want to help others find Him and to find the freedom that I now have.

What compelled you to share your story with us?: 

I believe this opportunity is for the Lord to fulfill plans that he has for my life. To share my story to those who are going through their own pain, and hope they know that they are not alone. Also to share my story with those who knew me during those times but may not have understood what was happening at the time. And ultimately for God to get the glory for what He has done in my life.

What encouraging words would you give to someone who shares a similar story?:

 I pray that you will continue to keep pushing through the darkness. You are NOT alone, despite how you feel. God has not left you, He is still by your side. Ask Him to reveal Himself and He will. There is light and there is joy on the other side of the tunnel. I promise it will end, and you will look back and realize just how strong you have become during the process.

Alopecia | Camille

Alopecia, Depression, Clickforhope, Self Harm, Suicide, BullyingJasmine Lopez3 Comments
Even though I am bald, with Alopecia Universals, I know that no one can ever make me feel inferior without me allowing it: and that is something that will never happen again. . -Camille

Please share your story:

My story begins in the 4th grade, when I was at the mere age of 9. My mom was doing my hair for school and she found my first bald spot. She had no idea what it was, so she took me to the first of many dermatologists. This man told my mother that I use to much hair product in my hair, and that was why I had a bald spot.  As more hair started to fall out, my mother got more concerned so we went to another doctor. This doctor told us that it was because I wore my hair in pony tails and it was putting too much stress on my hair. Finally my mother took to the internet and found that I could possibly have Alopecia. And again, we went to another doctor. Finally we had a diagnosis, Alopecia Areata. He wanted me to get shots of corticosteroids directly into my head. Well, anyone that knows me knows that I hate needles. In fact, what 9 year old likes shots? After finding out some pretty negative side effects and only a 50 percent chance of hair growth, we voted against the shots. I did go to another dermatologist and tried everything out there from creams, to lotions, to shampoos, to oral steroids, and nothing seemed to work. So, I gave up on treatment and decided to let it be. The kids at school were relatively fine about my hair loss, although a couple of girls would say things to me when they were mad, but being so young it didn't bother me too much.

Then came the dreaded middle school. I tend to think that middle school is just some evil place where kids like me go to get eaten alive, but I guess that's just my experience. At the beginning of 6th grade I had lost both my eyebrows, but thankfully the hair on my head was finally growing back. The bullying started slowly and I was handling it as much as I could, but it started to get to the point where I couldn't concentrate in school any longer. I was being called freak and hairless cat, they threw food at me during lunch, would try to trip me, shoved me in the halls and meowed at me. This happened on a daily basis. And what made it worse was that I lost both of my best friends to the bullies: they joined in. From there everything went downhill, I fell into a depression, I began self harming, I stopped eating, and I planned my suicide. This was all at the fragile age of 14. All I could think about were those cruel words playing like a recording over and over. I would come home from school and find horrible messages on my phone or on my social media accounts; there was no way to escape, there was no way out. One night I finally decided to go through with my plan to kill myself, I was desperate to get away from my pain. The only thing that stopped me from taking my life at the very last moment was hearing my sister come home. And it made me wonder how she would have reacted to finding her little sister dead. At that point I knew I needed to fight, and I needed to get help. After going to the school several times throughout the course of three years and getting no help at all, I decided to create a Facebook page. I called it Dare to be Different. There I was able to vent about my experience with bullying and talk to other kids who were dealing with similar issues. At that point I also decided to write a letter to my school superintendent, Dr. Burke. I told him what had been going on and how long I had been dealing with the bullying, and most importantly I told him how his school was handling it! I explained how my grades were suffering due to the bullying and so was my mental health. He came in a few days latter and talked to me. He finally put an end to the bullying by telling those girls if they say one more word to me that made me feel bad about myself they would be expelled! So yes, the bullying stopped, but everything didn't magically get better. Now I was forced to deal with my self esteem issues, my eating disorder and my self harming. I will admit that it took a very long time to put myself back together. But having the love and support of my family and three very special people, Lana Becker, Randi Moxi and Constantine James, helped immensely. 

My Facebook page is now a non-profit organization proudly called Cam's Dare To Be Different. I also have a website, www.camsdtbd.org. I speak to schools and groups sharing my story in hopes to get through to my peers. My motto is to inspire, empower and educate. I want people to understand how powerful words can be; words can heal or they can kill. I have also gotten involved with platform based pageant, and won the title of Miss Teen Illinois International 2014 and I am currently Miss Huntley 2015. My story has been featured in numerous newspapers and magazines, which helps me gain exposure and, in turn, help others. I've also won several awards including The Everyday Hero Award in 2015. My story is also featured in two books: Head On Stories of Alopecia and Bullying is No Laughing Matter. I'm also in the works of writing my own book that will feature 21 other boys and girls who also suffer from Alopecia.

I'm happy to say that I am once again a high honor roll student at Huntley High School, maintaining a 4.0. As a junior, I enjoy taking honor and AP classes to push my self academically. I plan on attending a university in the fall of 2017 to study Psychology! My goal is to touch as many lives as I possibly can. I want people to understand that everyone is different and that being different is not a negative thing. With the help of my family, my friends, all of my supporters, and God I have been able to achieve so many things I thought were impossible. I feel incredibly blessed to be where I am today, and I can't wait to see what the future has in store for me.

Losing my hair for the second time was not nearly as bad as the first and even though I am bald, with Alopecia Universals, I know that no one can ever make me feel inferior without me allowing it: and that is something that will never happen again. 

I finally found my passion, my purpose, my destiny.