There was one point in my life when everything I would see or think of was the negative side of things. I could not be happy or ever satisfied with anything in my life because of how bad and selfish I was. My mom was working hard shifts at SAM’s to keep up with bills, which made her depressed and stressed all the time. She was taking care of me and my brother at this time and everything was just too hard in life. I was an angry brat I would say…

In 5th grade I made a new friend, Mark. Mark was blind and kids would always pick on him but I would always have his back. We became best friends later on and started hanging out. One day, I was curious and asked him if he wished he could see like I could and surprisingly he said no. This really shocked me and I asked him why. He told me he liked being different from everyone else; he said that being that way let him see the good in everyone no matter what they look like. I was a bad kid and he saw the good in me which made me think a lot. He took great pride in how he was made and wouldn’t change for anything. This made me think how could my life be that bad… I mean look at his and he takes pride in it. I realized I needed to take responsibility and have pride in myself and what I do with my life. My mom was starting to give up and I would always try to comfort her but she was losing hope too quickly. I thought she needed to be inspired so I took from my friend’s pride and started to make a change in my life. I started to study hard and do extra work while entering a history contest at my school. Every day, I would think of my mom and brother to make a change. My teachers recommended that I enter a state competition for history without my mom knowing. I came in 2nd place in the state and won an invitation to attend one of the best private schools in Louisiana. I also won full paid scholarships for me and my brother to go there. When I told my mom she burst into tears of joy… When you make someone cry like that and when I saw the joy and hope in her eyes, I had the best feeling in my heart of what I had accomplished. She was so proud of me and my life changed from then.

Three weeks later, my mom received a call from a federal bank offering her a job with a tremendous pay increase that made our lives turn around. My mom’s hope and pride she sees in me changed my life. I will always try to do my best and never lose hope no matter how bad things get because there is always a chance to be great- you just need to chase what you believe in. My teachers having confidence in me to go above and beyond my expectations encouraged me to give 110% in life. Having a closer relationship and having deep conversations with my friend was an inspiration for my actions. Thanks to my best friend Mark.

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