Graduation Spotlight – The Girl Who Was Told She Can’t

Freeport, Illinois — Time is such a double edged sword isn’t it. Like a commodity, time is something we all want more of, can’t seem to find enough of and in this life anyway, is often something we seem to run out of.

Like a dripping faucet, the tic-toc-drip-drop of our daily lives runs by in second hand movements and before you know, it can feel like there’s no time left to do the things you wanted to do in life. All the things you always knew you could do, if you had just had enough time to do them.

But while time may not always heal every wound, and no, our individual time does not last forever, what time does offer to each of us is exactly what time represents.

It offers us time.

If you’re reading this, the very thing that so often appears to be on our back, is the very advantage we all have while we’re still here on this earth. There is still time and as the saying we have all heard goes, there is never a better time to begin then right now.

Your time could be time to re-build a broken friendship, heal an open wound, or maybe it’s finally time to jump out of that plane, go scuba diving, sail the ocean blue, take that chance or in this case, go back to school and get that degree. It doesn’t matter what the world thinks because the deciding factor is your resolve. It isn’t time holding us back, it is all the lies we allow ourselves to believe, and all too often, is merely a case of our willpower to do.

Such is the story of Deanna.

Deanna is a 52 year old woman once told by a previous boss that she was incompetent after taking a test, who took her strength back, broke the crutches of her own self worth and this Saturday, is going to walk down the isle of accomplishment with her chin held high.

She took time back and made the resolve for her, and now she’s going to graduate from college with a degree in applied science. She will be working as a Certified Medical Assistant, stat. (That means right away in fancy medical lingo. :))

Our interest in Deanna’s story began in December of 2016 when we wrote this article. Hers is a story not all that unfamiliar to many others of a life lived in the back row, where the spotlight doesn’t shine. Like most of us, they are the ones who no one ever pays much attention to, yet despite their grades or appearances or all the social labels the world tries to put on them, there’s a bright shining star burning within.

It’s the story of a woman’s plight who, despite knowing deep inside she deserved more, endured eight years of sobriety just to be happy enough with herself as a person, to even think that school was something she would be able to do.

We’re not all handed silver spoons. We’re not all dealt the same hand and we don’t all have the same influences. But we do all have a fire that burns within.

Deanna’s is a story that asks, what’s stopping you?

“I struggled many times” Deanna says. “I had to humble myself, I got upset when some of my classmates were getting 90+ grades on their tests and having fun on the weekends, when I had to put almost every waking moment into my books.”

Deanna says she went through a ton of different emotions as well.

“I laughed, cried, I wanted to quit, I yelled and I was in my instructor’s office more than once in tears. Putting one foot in front of the other and never giving up (even though some days I wanted to) was what I had to do.”

Today Deanna says, “I have learned so much about myself. At 52, I didn’t know there was anything more to know about me but I have learned that I can no longer say ‘I can’t'”.

“I can hold my head up a little higher after being beat down mentally for so many years.”

Some of our favorite stories are those of every day average people who push themselves beyond stereotypes, fear, what others think, statistics and carve their own successful happy path in life.

We are very pleased to report that Deanna, is one of those people.



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