A Hand to Hold

Cite: O’Conner and Spunt

Last week, I wrote about finding role models. Now, I would like to focus on something just as important: surrounding yourself with people who believe in you.

I am currently thinking about this because I am starting to look for jobs (scary thought). The whole process is overwhelming with many ups and downs. While I may feel doubtful sometimes, I always know who to call to cheer me up: my family or my boyfriend. They believe in me even when I do not believe in myself.

While I love to talk about my parents, my sister and my boyfriend, I woke up this morning thinking about another person who always believed in me. She was my high school advisor, Erin Raleigh. Erin was a beautiful person; always sunny with a great sense of humor. She made me laugh and relax when I was applying to colleges, which is a stressful time for all seniors. Most of all, she believed in me since 9th grade, when I first met her as an insecure freshman.

I remember one time coming to her, tearful and frustrated, since I did not get into one of my top choice schools. Erin gave me a hug and then said “Okay, you get 5 minutes to cry and vent about this. Then we are moving on to the other billion schools you will most likely get into and you will get over it.” I was so shocked at her abruptness, I started laughing. We quickly moved on from my disappointment.

Erin Raleigh

Erin was always there for me, even when things in her own life were not going well. Erin died of cancer very young, but you would have never known she was sick until the end.

What I hope you learn from this is the power of laughter but also the power of friendship and support. As ups and downs begin to happen in your life, you will need people to celebrate with and people to cry with. And then the people that tell you to stop crying and move on.

Who are your supporters? Who do you believe in? What are your stories?

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