The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires.
William Arthur Ward

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Positive Inspirational Stories

Positive Featured Inspirational Story - October 27 to November 30, 2007

Brick Wall

Tears poured from my eyes onto my cotton baby doll dress as I reached for my forehead. Hesitating to evaluate the throbbing black and blue bump, sweat began to concentrate on my palms as the pain became more and more unbearable. It was my first day of Kindergarten.

Playing outside during recess, a heap of sand swarmed into my eyes, and the teacher asked a girl named Dayna to take me to the nurse. Rather than leading me to the nurse's office, she accidentally led me into the brick wall adjacent to the entrance of the school. On that warm, sticky kindergarten day a painful bump above my right eye was formed as well as an eternal bond and friendship.

On every playground lively laughter can be heard out of the smiling mouths of children. Tire swings are ridden and monkey bars are climbed as these carefree children are fenced off from speeding cars, hectic office buildings, and homeless pedestrians. They are enclosed and separated from the reality
of actual existence, the real world.

Five year olds are unaware of the hardships and trials of life, the moments that are powerful enough to crumble or alter the idiosyncratic aspects of a soul. These moments can defeat one's character as a body succumbs to the potent influence of suffering. In life people are led into the 'brick walls' just as I was on that humid Kindergarten day which left an undying impact on my life. These brick walls are the powerful hurdles that human beings must overcome. They can be painful, leave bruises and everlasting marks, and be so immense that it may seem impossible to conquer and reach the other side, but I have learned there is no such word as impossible.

I was different than the average, worriless five year old girl. From the time of my birth I entered a world full of intricacy and struggle, a world where bad things happen to good people. I was the miracle baby.

They never expected him to survive the night. This was the night of February Seventeenth, 1981, long before I was even thought of. My father was taking my mother home from a late night study session at the University of Texas. The gas light began to flicker, and he knew he needed to get gas quickly.

He pulled into a gas station, filled up his tank, and then walked into the convenience store to pay for the gas. The door to the store was like a 'twilight zone' and served as the transformation from a healthy college student to a person fighting to live. Within five minutes his entire life was distorted.

A robbery was taking place at the convenience store, and the three robbers shot him in the head execution style to 'waste' the witness. Not one soul thought he could survive the night as the police transferred his file to the homicide department.

As the sun rose the next morning my dad overcame the odds and was still fighting for his life with all his strength and power. The neurosurgeon then performed my dad's life saving surgery.

With many years of rehabilitation, hard work, faith, and perseverance my dad slowly achieved the impossible and assimilated back into the every day world. It was not easy. He had to learn the everyday tasks over again which we take for granted such as walking and tying shoes.

The only indication of his accident today is paralysis on his right side, and he lives a successful and prosperous life helping others. He truly is a miracle and inspiration to all, and I am the girl he never dreamed he would be able to have. I am his miracle child.

Dayna was different. Her innocent view of the world came to an end when she was eight. RING! RING! RING! The phone rang persistently as the buzzing noise left an imprinting sound within my head. The noises coming from the telephone quickly filled throughout my house, bouncing off one wall onto the other, sliding from room to room.

I looked at my mother in the hallway and tears were flowing out of her eyes onto the hardwood floors. I had never seen my mom like this before and instantly knew something had gone terribly wrong.

Holly, Dayna's mom, was diagnosed with stage four breast cancer and was only given a few months left to live. She decided to fight the cancer despite the odds and undergo treatment. With much inner strength and determination to continue living a successful and loving life with her family, she beat the cancer and went into remission. Later on in Holly's life, she was diagnosed with a brain tumor, but she never gave up her fight. She once again beat the odds and truly embodies the definition of a survivor.

No longer were we the average eight year old girls on the playground taking turns pushing one another on the swing set. We were young bodies filled with realistic and life altering hardships. On the outside appeared our big brown eyes and energetic smiles, but there was internal bleeding which shaped who we are. At a young age we were introduced to the cruel phenomenon which exists in the world. This early introduction to the realities of life prepared us for future hardships. We learned the might of personal strength and faith as we were taught that one can overcome anything if he puts his mind to it.

The bond that exists between Dayna and me was forever impacted by these experiences. Not only can we listen and support one another, but most importantly we can relate to one another. Our friendship is what allowed us to overcome mental challenges in our lives, from intense difficulties to every day stresses in the world.

We learned from our parents that anything in life is achievable, and with a positive attitude and outlook nothing is impossible. Our connection is resilient to any intrusive force, and I know that for the rest of our lives we will be there for one another to not only overcome obstacles but also to celebrate and enjoy fantastic times with one another.

Our parents are an inspiration to us and have showed us the true significance of life. One's life is a gift that should be cherished and never taken for granted. All people will eventually walk into a brick wall in their lives. It may leave a permanent bruise, and it may be difficult to reach the other side of the wall, but it is always possible.

Written by Shawn Segal

Shawn Elyse Segal is a seventeen year old senior at Bellaire High School in Houston, Texas. She is a member of the National Honor Society, Vice President of the Hebrew Club, Treasurer of Coexist: Footsteps to Peace, and invests her time in many other clubs and organizations. She loves to volunteer, run, and write in her spare time. To let her know your thoughts you can contact her via her father's web site at . . . inspirationbymike >>>

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