I sighed and stared at the blank page staring back at me. I didn’t know where to start. It all unraveled in front of me and I scrambled to put this together piece-by-piece. There is so much to say and so many feelings. Last year, I had to kiss my track career goodbye as I competed for the last time as a Javelina in March 2018. A few days ago, I kissed my university goodbye too. I crossed the last finish line of college – graduation!
When I was growing up, I never imagined the things that I would accomplish in my future. Even if I did, my imagination would still fall short of measuring up to the success. I was the young girl who almost didn’t make it through high school and whose experienced too many downfalls, like facing death three times. I didn’t know why God kept me here, but I can tell you guys, I am starting to find out!
There were a few days I was so exhausted that I struggled to get out of bed and face another day; all from pushing myself too hard mentally and physically the previous day. I had many emotional breakdowns and shed many tears. Other times I laughed and smiled so hard that my cheeks hurt…but at no time did I give up!
In my time as a full-time student-athlete, I’ve become a nine-time All-American, national champion, the first FEMALE Sports Editor in the history of the university, received four academic awards and became the first to ever graduate in my family. What surprises me the most? Somewhere in between all of this, I’ve managed to write my first book, Perseverance Is My Power, which is available for purchase now!
I could not have done all of those things without the love and support I’ve received over the last three years. I want to thank all the people who believed in me and supported me throughout my time in college. You all know who you are. Acquiring my degree has truly been an uplifting and challenging experience. When I walked on that stage for my diploma on December 14, my victory was partially yours too.
Guess what? I even want to thank all those people who said I wouldn’t accomplish all that I have – even those people who were silently hoping I’d fail. Yup, I’m grateful for you too because your doubt of me taught me to believe in myself even if no one else did!
Ma, thank you for believing in me. You have picked me up off my knees, dusted me off, and stood me back up every single time life knocked me down. You have been the most amazing example of strength, independence, and faithfulness. You raised this beast all on your own. Now you can rest assured that you did the right thing with me because I made it Ma.
Thank you to everyone who has cheered me on, for understanding me and for giving me the confidence to stand on my own two feet.
Guys, if I can leave you with anything, I want to leave you with this; No matter what you have been through, where you come from or where you’re going, your level of success is completely up to you! Do not let your downfalls determine who you will be, ever. Do not let spitefulness and negativity get in the way of your success. While it can be hard, try your best not to focus on the negative things – but always on the positive. I am walking proof that you can do absolutely anything you put your mind to! Make all your endings into new beginnings. ❤️