I'll never forget that day. I was in my 7th grade classroom, just twenty minutes outside of New York City. It was someone's birthday and we were waiting for the extra cupcakes to be raffled off. I remember kids being called out of the classroom one by one until there were only half of us left. And I remember thinking "Good. Less competition for the cupcakes." That is until they called my name. But no one was waiting for me in the office, instead I picked up the phone. "Keep your cellphone near you," my dad's voice came through the receiver. "Something's happened in the city. Mommy is fine. But you are going to stay in school. You are not to be afraid, mama. No man, no woman..." he began. "...no beast alive can beat me," I finished the phrase we always said to remind us to be strong, to be fearless. I'm not sure if I was fearless or if I simply endured that fear, but I remained in class for the rest of the day, and by the time my dad picked me up at the normal time, I'd learned a valuable lessons:
"THE GREATEST SOULS ARE AWAKENED OUT OF SUFFERING. THE MOST IMPRESSIVE PERSONALITIES ENDURE MANY SCARS."Thirteen years later. Never forget. We are stronger than we think.
1, edited by me