November 13, 2015 was the day my life took a major turning point. Playing around during P.E. I said, “Sure, I can do a handstand!” I put both hands on the ground and threw my long legs up in the air. I knew something wasn’t right as soon as I stood up. I felt sick my heart was beating so fast. I couldn’t catch my breath. At that moment, volleyball and track were the last thing on my mind. Soon, I lost my vision, I couldn’t see anything or feel my legs. My mom picked me up from school and took me to the nearest emergency room. In seconds, my world was turned upside down. Next thing I knew, I was headed to Children’s hospital in Birmingham, Alabama by a Life flight helicopter. I do remember seeing the most beautiful sunset I had ever seen from the sky. I think it was a sign from God that I was going to be okay. Dr. Lau diagnosed me with Ventricular Tachycardia. He said my heart was beating over two hundred beats a minute for over thirty minutes. I had never heard of Ventricular Tachycardia (VT). Dr. Lau said VT is a heart rhythm disorder caused by abnormal electrical signals. In VT, abnormal electrical signals cause the heart to beat faster than normal, usually 100 or more beats a minute. In my case, over 200 beats a minute. My heart was beating so fast it was unable to pump enough blood to my body and lungs which explains why I lost my vision and couldn’t feel my legs. Dr. Lau VT is rare in young people. He said in a typical year he might see five children with VT if, they live through their initial episode. (In some cases, ventricular tachycardia can cause sudden cardiac arrest). Over the next years I would have another episode and two cardiac ablations. I am now fully independent of taking any heart medication. I have not had a VT episode in over two years. Over the past four years, the trials and tribulations I have experienced have shaped me and molded me into the person I am today. If I had never had my VT episode, I would never have learned to have patience in difficult circumstances, to embrace the life others take for granted, and to remain optimistic despite the troubles of life. In spite of the challenges my heart and body faced in middle school and high school, I was still determined to be involved in my school and athletics and go to college. I decided to run for a class office and actually won. I discovered that I really had a passion for being in a leadership positions. I ended up being a Senior Class officer. I remember my parents always worrying about how they’d send me to college, especially with all my medical bills and my older sister already in college. So, I am applying for this scholarship to help take some of the burden off of my parents. I am using my past experiences to remind me to, “Keep my faith.” It’s always easiest to just give up, but the tough road can be the most rewarding. On November 13, 2015, I believe God saved me because he has a purpose for my life. Looking back at my own struggles and tough experiences, I wouldn’t trade them for anything, even knowing how difficult those years of physical anguish and discomfort were. They have made me who I am, and I am a better person for it. So, I am thankful for all of the tough experiences I have had in my life. They have taught me every day is a gift, make it count. I can’t wait to see what tomorrow holds!