It was a very long groundhog day. It all started in March when schools, courses, play stations, cinemas and all possible places where everyone could get infected began to closing up. The school hadn't worked for a month. These economic crises have been continuing for now. Some branches were opened off the record. Mostly, computer clubs or bars were running themselves unofficially. To be clear, anyone who had offline business couldn't have made a lot of money.Before pandemic our city was quite polluted because of contaminated air.And my friend's friend recommended to buy masks to filter the air.Even though it did not help a lot,I bought 60 masks for 2100 Kyrgyz soms.Half of it was black and the other half was white.Then one mask costed 35 soms.In period of pandemic I sold some of masks for really high price.It was one of the safest masks for breathing.I gave masks to the store which is in our yard.By the way store owners were my neighbors.So,I offered them this idea and we made a deal.One mask costed 500 soms and you could use it for a month.So masks were sold out.It was really good idea and I embodied it.I don't know why I did this because I didn't need money.I didn't even spend this money.I think it was not even to make money,but simply to implement the cool idea.Once we tired to sit at home and went to walk.And we were shocked that there was no one in the street.Fresh air like in mountains,trees were much greener and livelier than before quarantine because no cars were being driven,so no traffic jams and unclean gases which cars produced.After this,you begin to appreciate nature and become more friendly to the environment.Also we had curfew after 8pm.To be out,after curfew without permission was to risk punishment.In the summer 2020,I got sick of Corona virus.I'd been ill for three days.Firstly,you feel weakness but everybody have different types of symptoms.It seems to me that after the Corona virus,everyone became weak and lazy and began to forget all events.Perhaps,these“everyone”were my grandparents.They started getting older.I visited them everyday,so I noticed it then.But in general,in my family no one had been sick with the virus for a long time.Then school started.This was the moment where very groundhog day started.My school was online, and it was quite bad.I studied at usual public school.I was in 8th grade.First of all,I thought that we are going to study on zoom with cameras,but most of lessons were on Whats App.Most of the teachers just sent video tutorials for a topic of lesson and sent exercises.So they didn't teach us.Some teachers didn't even answer to my questions.All we needed to do was register ourselves.So everybody liked doing nothing.That's why I decided to change my school.It was quite easy to study for me so at the end of 8th grade,I finished it with excellent marks.To be honest,I sometimes cheated.So,the first rule is to learn by yourself and not to wait until someone forces you.At winter I bought one game and played it for whole winter and spring.Cinemas and all possible branches began to be open.Of course, they had been closed and opened for many times,but by the summer everything was open.Every week something new came out,I mean movies,games and serials.After sitting at home and not doing absolutely any sports,I got hypodynamia.After taking two-weeks of massage therapy at 8 am on the other side of town,I started to exercise frequently and became healthier.Everyday was alike.A looped day is like in which you wake up and try to do something interesting and looking for something to occupy yourself with.It was very boring at home so I tried to do everything.Everyday I walked and rode a bike.I replayed all my video games,board games,started to learn math,all school objects and read all books.I could do all stuff and hobbies that I couldn't do before quarantine.One year of sitting at home gave me more opportunities and free time to build a plan or think about future but I didn't do anything. I just lied on bed,watched YouTube,played games and did some useless things.It's hard to control your will or future because there is a lot of temptations in life which divert you from your goals and aims.Only strong people can upgrade themselves and fight with laziness.So laziness is killer of your aims.To be honest,I won my laziness at the end of spring 2021.Also my eye vision became very bad to end of the year.To cap it up,results of pandemic had been bad.But there were also many good sides.I think it was a break or pause to think and do what you couldn't do before.It was challenge for people, everyone perceived it differently.Relationships between loved ones got improved.Personally,I began to communicate more with relatives.During this time,some people slowed down and became lazier.Everyone has spent this pandemic in their own way,fun or sad,productive or useless.As if the time had stopped for the humanity,to look back at their mistakes,to slow down and to understand the main value of life.
Do you know why I wanted to write about this topic? There is nothing in the world like the smell of hot bread made from natural wheat flour and baked in a hot “tandir” (Uzbeks bake bread in a special oven made of clay)! Especially if this bread is covered with the loving hands of your loving mother! This process may seem simple to you, but the smell of hot bread has become unforgettable for me due to one incident… Beautiful spring. However, due to the quarantine caused by the spread of the coronavirus, no crows are seen on the streets. My family (me, my husband and my little daughter) and I live in a rented apartment in one of the city's apartment buildings. The reason for the pandemic is that we almost never go out of the house. We only go out when we need to (usually my husband does). In the apartment across from us lived an old Korean woman (she spoke to us in Russian). He took his dog Niki for a walk every morning and evening. My daughter loved playing with Niki. The old woman lived alone. From time to time the old woman would come to see her sister, who was standing a stop away. I used to hang a bowl next door to my neighbor while I was cooking delicious meal. We did not leave the house due to quarantine. Of course, we barely met our neighbor's lonely old woman. One day my daughter Malika and I opened the door to go outside to pick up trash. The door to the apartment across the street (the old woman's house next door) is open. I was surprised. The lonely old woman would never leave the door open. At the sound of our footsteps, Niki looks out the door with sad eyes. When he saw us, he jumped out of the door and started walking around us. I thought Nicki was happy to see Malika. But for some reason Niki began to lead me to the open door, biting my anxious skirt. I was really scared to go into my neighbor's house. At that moment, a thousand thoughts crossed my mind. Then I gathered my thoughts and decided to go home. As far as I can see, the poor old woman is exhausted and helpless. Looks like she haven't tasted meal in a long time. We immediately called the doctors. At first we thought the old woman had a coronavirus. Fortunately, he was not diagnosed with the disease. She had high blood pressure, dizziness, and fatigue. He left the door open so that no one would know when I died. We also admired Niki's intelligence and dedication. Without him, his master would have died. We often took out food for the old woman, and for Nikki as well. Soon the old woman recovered. One day the old woman said to me, "Dilya (that's what she called me), if you go to your village, bring me a loaf of hot bread baked in the tandir, and I want to smell the hot bread". I said with pleasure, "When I go to my village, I will bring you hot bread". Days passed, and the air became hotter and hotter. When you go outside, it burns like a hot oven. It was the arrival of summer. At this point, you want go to cool places and relax around the eastern stream. Fortunately, quarantine restrictions in Uzbekistan have been eased. Now it's time to go to our hometown. We were very happy with that. On my way to the village, I was overjoyed to be able to bring hot bread to my neighbor. We had a pleasant weekend in the village. My husband was called to work because the quarantine restrictions were relaxed. I immediately went down to bake hot bread. I hurried to town, hugging two loaves of hot bread. As I went, I imagined how happy she would be to give the hot bread to the old woman next door. Little did I know that we had come a long way with such thoughts. Here we are at our destination. As soon as I got out of the car, I saw people gathered in front of our house, and something stuck in my throat ... In the morning, the old woman died. Sorry, I didn't make it ... I burned myself, but to no avail ... Since then, when I smell the hot bread that has just come out of the oven, my heart becomes strange ...
I am writing my story. Not just here -- in this place and this space, but my life story. Every day when I awaken, the page is blank for me to fill. How will I fill it? The pen is mine to wield. The choice is mine: Will it be a page of adventure or service or quiet reflection? Like the best books, the best lives contain a variety of moments: those moments of quiet reflection give us time to breathe. As readers, we need those moments after pages of intense action. The same is true in life. After busy days or weeks or seasons, we desperately need moments of quiet reflection to rest and process. We love adventure and it is necessary, too, for an excellent book or a life well-lived. We need our heart pumping, moments of excitement interspersed with trepidation. While I am not the most ADVENTUROUS person, I love traveling and trying new foods. I enjoy the outdoors and music. All of those provide moments of adventure to enhance the story of my life -- new places visited, new foods tried, new paths walked, new goals met, concerts attended and performed, and so much more. The pages of adventure are some of the highlights in our books -- and in our lives. I can choose to fill the page of today with pride and selfishness or I can choose humility and service. I've chosen each, at different times, and that's part of life, too. Even now, at my age, there are still days I struggle with pride and selfishness. Usually now, though, my days and my pages are characterized by service -- kindness and helping. Sometimes I act first and my heart follows a bit behind my hands and feet. I know if I do the right thing for the right reason, my heart will catch up -- even on the days when it would rather wallow in selfishness, bitterness, resentment or pride. I try not to fill my pages with those moments, but I would be lying and hypocritical if I said they don't exist! Those pages teach us to live better -- and remind us that we are all human -- struggling with human weaknesses. They remind us to be kind because we all have those struggles! There are some pages I don't choose, but I have to write them anyway -- these are the mandatory writing assignments -- the moments that choose us. Tragedy, grief, unfairness, persecution, heartbreak. They are the pages we want to skip, but we can't because they help shape the character. We know if we skip these parts, we wont understand the character as well. So we soldier on in our book, as we do in our lives -- with the tears rolling freely and the heart jostling around in pieces. Yes, those moments shape us, strengthen us, and challenge us. We would not be the same without them. Little by little, the tears dry and the heart mends. The scars remain and the memories still sometimes are hard to revisit, but we appreciate those pages and their value in the overall story that is being told. Sometimes it would be nice to be able to leave a page blank and come back to it. When we are waiting, seeking, plagued with indecision. A writer of a novel may have that luxury, but as I'm writing my life story, I don't have that as an option. I woke up this morning and I must live today. 86,400 seconds each day in the story of my life to be used, wielded, and lived. 86,400 seconds to write something of importance. It cannot be rolled back or rolled forward. It is to be lived in the here and now and reflected upon later to help shape and create the next 86,400 seconds. That's how we grow. It is one of the hallmarks of good characters -- they grow! I want to be a character that grows! So I reflect on how I spent this 86,400 seconds and it helps me choose how I spend the next 86,400 . . . little by little and bit by bit I make better choices; I grow. As I do, I impact and influence other characters in the story of my life -- and the story of theirs. They also influence and impact me. Books and lives are meant to be shared. I must admit there are days when I am just going through the motions, keeping time. There are days and pages where my 86,400 seconds were not very memorable or full of significance, but It's not how I want to write my story. I want to end up on the last page -- the last breath -- used up and tired and full of great memories and great lessons. I want to leave behind a shared legacy of a live well-lived and a life book well-written. That's where my faith comes in. It helps me to live well and push forward and persevere. It gives me a higher calling and a reminder that my life book is NOT just for me -- but for all who are watching and all who will come after me. It's a reminder that I'm writing this story to be shared and I want it to be worthy of sharing.
Everyone wants to be different from the next person. They want something that sets them apart from everyone else. And to be completely honest, I don't think I'm different from anyone else. The only thing that is different is how I was brought up. I wasn't brought up like a "normal" family. Or what passes off as normal in this world. I never had that classic tv family who sat around the dinner table, talking about their day. I never grew up with a perfect mother or father. At a very young age, I was taken from my mother. I spent a few days in foster care with my two older siblings. After that, I was placed with my uncle and my grandmother. I didn't even know who my father was and at that time, I didn't really care that much. I thought that anybody who didn't want to be in their own daughter's life didn't need to be thought about or met. I used to watch anti-depressant commercials or group homes ones and I remember thinking I would never end up like that. I remember thinking that why would anyone want to kill themselves when the world that we lived in was so amazing. But that was until I got older and felt the cruelness of the same amazing world I thought I lived in. My mother eventually came back into my life and everything was good. That was until me and my sisters got taken for good. We got put into foster care and got split up. We didn't get to see each other as often as we'd like, but we had to deal with it. I remember promising my little sister, who was only 10 years old at the time, that I wouldn't leave and if I did I wouldn't leave without saying goodbye. But that was a short-lived promise. The very next day, I was taken again and put in a different foster home. Me and my sister eventually got placed with my uncle in our home town. And we were happy. But that was short-lived as well. I was attending my second year of 7th grade. That's when I started to get bullied. I was going through a lot of changes. I was questioning my sexuality. And my fellow classmates didn't like that. So they bullied me. And I did the only thing I knew was right. I refused to go to school and I ran away from my problems. My uncle was working in Atlanta and he had to leave for work at 6 am every morning. And me refusing to go to school interfered with that and he almost lost his job. I couldn't stay with him. So I got taken away from my younger sister again. Without saying goodbye. They shipped me off to my first group home. Where I constantly got bullied but nobody would believe me. I begged and begged for them to change my placement. But they didn't listen until a few of the girls, who were much older and much bigger, attacked me while I was reading. I ended up in the hospital for a few days. They moved my placement to another group home which was 4 hours away from my hometown. That place didn't work out either. The woman there made us clean everything. Even her own room. She was rude to me and the rest of the girls. And when I told her about me liking girls, she hated it and sent me away. That's when I went to my last group home. I didn't like this one. I stayed in my room and cried for days. But I hadn't even given it a shot yet. So I did. And I actually liked it. The staff was nice and so were the other girls. The group home was like my second home. No, it was my second home. Before I got there, I started to act out in very bad ways. I started drinking and smoking. But when I came to that last group home, they gave me a second chance and I changed for the better. I learned that running away from my problems wasn't the answer. I learned to overcome a lot and I changed for the better. A year later I was released back to my grandmother and I have been behaving since then. In conclusion, I've learned that the only thing that sets us apart is how we are brought up and how we are raised. So, that is my life story. I choose how I write it and I will not apologize for what I write or what edits I decide to make.
Four hundred and fifty thousand babies in the United States are born too soon. Additionally, fifteen million babies are born preterm around the world. On average, more than 80 percent of preterm births are unanticipated. I was one of those children. I was born one pound and ten ounces. When I was born I had many life threatening complications and the doctors were afraid that I would not make it through the night. I can vividly remember being twelve years old and finding a scrapbook that my parents used to document my childhood laying on the mantel. On the front page my mom revealed how I was born prematurely. During that moment, when I read all complications I had, I was taken aback. From that moment, I knew that my life had meaning. It was in that moment that I understood I was meant to do something extraordinary. I realized, that day, that ordinary just wouldn't do. Due to the impeccable doctors and nurses that worked, tirelessly, to save my life, I vowed to live a life serving others. From my vast experience serving on the usher board at Christians for Change church to managing the football team at North Springs High School, I understand the importance of giving back. I've always had a zest for serving my community. It's been imperative for me to serve as a pillar in my community. Throughout my high school tenure, I've been able to accumulate more than one hundred and fifty community service hours. That day I saw my childhood scrapbook left a huge impact on me. I would truly be lying if I said there were times where I didn't ask “why me?” However, I used that questions to fuel my future aspirations. I want to work with babies that were born like me or in similar situations. By doing so, I could leave a lasting impact on the lives of others. After researching premature births and seeing the devastating statistics on babies born under those circumstances, all I've want to do was help. After a lot of research, I learned that nurses that specifically help premature babies are Neonatal Nurses. Without the help of a neonatal nurse, I would not be here today. I want to study nursing. It is my life's mission to foster improvement in the statistics of children born prematurely. Becoming a nurse means that I'll possess power to help babies who were just like me. Studying nursing at your University will help my life come full circle. Further, it'll help bring my wildest dreams into fruition. Life is about giving rather than receiving. I'm hoping that I can embody this philosophy at your University.
“How did you get that scar?” a curious child asks. She is referring to the “V” shaped scar on the right side of my stomach, just above my hips. While others have commented that the scar is “weird”, I have never found shame in it. “Are you talking about this one?” I ask, just to be sure. She nods. I'm at the pool with kids i'm babysitting, and in my bathing suit, revealing my stomach and scar. The child's question is one that I have been asked my whole life. “I had surgery,” I say. “Because I was born early.” I think about all the babies who are born early, all the anxious parents who spend sleepless months in a hospital, and the hundreds of doctors and nurses who spend countless hours working to ensure that the premature babies continue to breathe. My twin and I were one of those babies. We were born at 24 weeks. When you are just 24 weeks pregnant, your baby is about the size of an ear of corn. Doctors gave her the news that no parent would ever want to hear; “Your twins have only about a 10% chance of survival, and if they do survive, a plethora of severe health problems are likely”. My twin, Kara and I came into this world 4 months early on September 14,1998. Kara weighing 1.06lbs and Me weighing 1.04lbs. Each baby could fit in the palm of their dads hand. Their parents were only allowed to put their fingers into the incubator box to touch Kaylee and Kara. At one point i dropped down to 12oz, the weight of a can of soda. Within two days, sadly and heartbreakingly, the doctors informed my parents that Kara had level four brain bleed leaving her with almost no brain activity. Kara died and my family we able to hold her, love her and say their final goodbyes. Then she became my Guardian Angel. I gave my parents plenty of scares when I would often stop breathing, making my skin turn purplish as well as my heart rate would drop. The sound of alarms going off sent fear through my parents.Several days after my sister passed away, my parents got an early morning phone call and another big scare… Kaylee had ruptured her bowel and needed emergency surgery. The surgeon informed them that I had a 5% chance of making it and that they should prepare for the worst. Family and friends had said their final goodbyes before I went in for surgery and everyone thought that was it, I wasn't going to make it. The doctors also informed my family that if I were to make it, I would be unresponsive, in a wheelchair and have allot of problems my whole life. But, as I always did, I fought through it and survived with no complications . 100 days later, on Christmas Eve, I got released to go home after I had beat insurmountable odds. I do not remember my months in the hospital. I do not remember all the needle pricks that gave me permanent scars along my wrists, ankles, and stomach. I was a baby. Still, today I am grateful for my scars. I am so grateful that I am alive and forever grateful to all of the nurses and doctors who saved my life. My dad has always told everyone “Kaylee is a promise to our friends and family that life does go on…She is our miracle” Being a micro preemie I do still have complications because of the surgeries. I still have scars from the surgeries and IV lines. Being a preemie is the best thing that God could have given me. It gives me a spirit to fight and never stop. It gives me compassion for those going through painful situations. It gives me passion for babies that never get to see the light of day.I want to be a occupational therapist for little kids and babies or a NICU nurse. I know that I can give hope to families of premature babies with my story and working to make miracles happen for them as well. Occupational and physical therapy made me into who i am today. Physical therapy was tough for me but it helped me drastically. If it wasn't for therapy i would be in a wheelchair and unresponsive. I am thankful my parents put me through therapy.
I wasn't always so anxious around people. When I was younger, sitting still was not a problem. Being around people was no scary to me. A lot of kids had trouble sitting still, but I never understood it. I had lots of friends, too. After the incident, of course, things changed. It sucks when you don't get to make choices for yourself. When others around you always make choices for you, you really forget how to make your own. It's different though, when choice is completely out of the question; when you have no control. When he held me down and I could not scream; that wasn't a choice. When he grabbed my body and I hit me if I squirmed; there was no choice. When I cried out in my mind, but he was the only one there. No one would ever choose that for themselves. After that, the loss of choice made me lose my mind. I couldn't sit still yet I could not move. There was nothing anyone could say or do that would snap me out of the deep hole I was trapped in. I watched in horror as my brain threw itself off the cliffs of sanity and into the bottomless pits of crazed depression. I could do nothing, and I could not tell anyone. If I had, he would probably come back for me. My mind would scream for help, but no one was there and no one could be. It was all my fault, anyways, why put that on someone else? No one in the world could convince me otherwise. Or so I thought. Almost two years later I met a boy. Now, I had been with boys before, but my hidden PTSD kept me feeling on edge, and ruined my relationships. This boy felt perfect for me. He snapped me back to reality. I thought I loved him, and he told me he loved me. Only after he hit me, or he snapped at me. It was his apology. After he gave me that black eye: "I love you, Jenna." It took me too long to realize what I was in was wrong. He cheated on me, and I had to live knowing that even though he hurt me, abused me, put me down, and I let it all happen, I was not enough. When I said I was depressed before, it was nothing compared to then. Hurt twice, abused twice, touched without consent twice. It was like clockwork. So when I met another boy, I pushed him away. The men in my life always hurt me, so why should he have been any different? Except he was. This boy supported me, loved me, cared about me, and helped me. He would hold me tight when I was having a panic attack. He would soothe me when I had flashbacks. He helps me when I forget that the pain is over. He lets me steal his jackets when I need something to hug at night. He doesn't mind when my tears and runny mascara stain his shirts. He treats me with respect and loves me. I never thought it possible to find someone who pushes the pain away. I thought it was impossible to trust a man. And if you have been through this, I am writing this to you: Don't hide away. You will hurt, but there is someone there for you. Cut the negative people out of your life. Do NOT allow abuse. You are stronger than you think. So many times, I was close to ending my life. So many times, I hurt more than I could possibly imagine. Yet here I am. I am in control and I have someone who supports and loves me. There is always someone who will support and love you, even when you think it is impossible.
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