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As I walked through my front porch, the first thing I noticed was the smell. Then, I heard the moan. I remember the occasion quite graphically, although it was ten years ago. Having to see my grandmother fight to survive a heart attack, gave me an example of how to improve my life. My cousin and I had just returned from the store with my uncle, expecting everything to be the same. I thought wrong. I then realized that nothing will ever be the same again.
As we slowly moved into the living room, a distressing sight met our eyes. Laying face down on a couch, my grandma laid red-faced and shaken. Suddenly, she was gulping for air. First, she grabbed a trash can, plunged her face into it, and vomited with such violence that I shivered. Suddenly I realized that what it really means for my grandmother to have a heart attack. At seven years old, I faced the terror of a heart attack in my house, and envision it for the first time that my grandma was fighting to survive. She looked at me from the corner of her eye as she raised her head from the trash can and said a weak, "Hi," only to vomit again while missing the trash can. My uncle looked me in my watery eyes, put his hand on my back, and said, "Let your grandma rest; she has been fighting bold and tough."
My grandma, the love of my life was now fighting to survive, everyday of her life. After the doctors said that she only has few weeks to survive. I began to worry. Growing up without a grandmother standing by my shoulder, I always felt disassociated from my peers. In elementary and middle school, I acknowledged that all the other kids talked and played with ease. I, by foil, was quiet, and shy, lonesome at my home and even at school. I dread human connection so much that I could not even look in the eyes of people who spoke to me. All the kids in school called me a ââ‚¬Å“bum,ââ‚¬ an easy target for bothering. My shyness affected my performance in school. With the deep accent my classmates made fun of me; I lost the confidence to succeed in school. With each bad grade would not only further hurt my confidence, but also made me feel that I have demoted my grandmother, who cared so much about academics when she was healthy. I was humbled with every report card I showed her, knowing that she is disappointed.
One day, I decided that I am going to change my life. Listening to other studentsââ‚¬â„¢ stories of how well they do in school, I recalled my uncleââ‚¬â„¢s words: "Let your grandma rest; she has been fighting bold and tough." I then realized that the example of how to change my life had been ahead of me the entire time. My grandma had fought and struggled to survive her heart attack. By fighting it and surviving to live another day with her family, she had taught me in a clear way that I should never give up and that I could pass any barriers, so that I could create a better life for myself. I shaped my mind so that I would face the world "bold and tough," and I would put off the tension, which had constrained my personality. I decided to shine as a student, improve my grades, and my talent with a moving passion. I decided no more delays, no more fear, and most importantly, I have decided that not to give up.
More than any other turning point I have approached, I am proud of my success in knocking over my shyness. In ninth grade, I made the decision to join ESL, which would urge me to talk frequently with my classmates. I knew that my role as a student and class leader would teach me to speak confidently. My participation in this program worked amazements. I now feel at ease among my peers. Last month I even hosted an event for the church, speaking comfortably in front of a large group. I am satisfied with the things I have changed in my life, and I owe the entire honor to my grandmother. My grandma has been by my side. Even as a bedridden heart patient, jolted by therapies, her example taught me to face challenges and to override them; no matter the nature of the challenge. Her struggle with heart attack became a example for me to improve myself. Even now, I continue to battle, swept with college exams. Despite the challenge, I continue unaffected, knowing that the best of my ability is my backbone to live bravely like my grandma and to overcome the challenges of life. I can never thank my grandma enough for what she has given me. My grandmother has become my role model. I hope that one day, many years from now; she will say to me, "I am proud of you my grandson; you have been fighting bold and tough."