My future as a healthy child did not look promising with failing lungs and weighing 2 lbs. 6 ounces at birth. I was born 32 weeks early and stayed in the NICU at St. John’s Hospital in Detroit for 2 months. Steroids and breast milk helped increase my lung capacity and growth. This was a trying time for my mom as my father was in jail. She persevered and was determined that she would bring me home and my life would begin as a normal child. Due to my compromised immune system, I endured a few medical issues such as Kawasaki’s Disease and many strands of the Flu. Also, I was diagnosed with Asthma at 7 months. To add to that, the ENT doctor detected hearing loss in both ears. I had to have 3 sets of tubes by the age of 6. As my mother tenaciously pushed for my health, she and my father divorced due to physical abuse, which I witnessed, and this led to childhood trauma. I attended therapy for 2 years and now have the ability to find the good in anything.
My mother, sister and grandmother has always surrounded me with love, encouragement, and positivity. Because of this, I have become trustworthy, resilient, self-less and kind. My family and upbringing are what motivates me to succeed. Because I was motivated as a small child, running was fun. I would try and race everyone at the park and at school. One day at school, we were watching the 2012 Olympics and I watched Usain Bolt win the 100m. At that moment, I visualized myself running in the Olympics. I ran home to share my excitement with my mom only to hear the disappointing news that we could not afford for me to join any track clubs. But I never lost hope. My mom saved money for me to start running track and field in 8th grade. Track and field have taught me how to adhere to instruction and improve technique, perseverance, mental strength, achieving a goal, and flexibility. This versatility has allowed me to run in 7 events such as: 100m, 200m, 400m. 4x100, 4x200, 4x400 and long jump. While running at the high school level, my goals are to maintain a 3.5 g.p.a. or higher and obtain classes that would prepare me for my academic career. My goals for running at the collegiate level is to become a Sports Analyst, an Honor Student, join or start a program for young runners ages 6-17, and create a Podcast that would emphasize the differences between track and field versus football and basketball. Eventually, I plan to create multiple scholarships for 17-21-year-old participants to run track and field within the black community.
I would like to use track and field as an outlet to impact people from different walks of life by offering different forms of entertainment. This will be a platform to give back to others who are in a similar position as myself.