So many people ask when the first time was that I felt my Hero Within. And although that answer is easy, I didn’t know what is was called until much later. But, I was 16 years old. Being through the abuse I had been through for so many years I had turned to illegal street drugs by the time I was 13. At the age of 16 I was dating a dealer and decided to have a huge party. The guests were by invite only. One of the guests invited was a boy. A boy who had befriended us months before, he went to the french high school, was 16 and drugs were no stranger. However, soon into this party we quickly learned that his story was not true and what we were dealing with was a 12-year-old boy who had never done drugs in is life and after giving him what he paid for and then some as a welcome to the group, he almost died. From that moment, my boyfriend went to jail and I decided to stop doing drugs. A few days later, as I came down the stairs to head out the door to go to school I was cornered by my step-father. With one hand he ripped the ponytail out of my hair, as pony tails mean you are a slut (of course!!????) and the other he pointed to my forehead and told me that a used dirty cigaret butt on the ground had more value than me. After grabbing the kitchen knife and putting it in my backpack I walked outside. For the first time I didn’t cry; I wasn’t angry. For the first time in my life I was ok….I had agreed with everything he had ever said to me and believed that everything he had done to me was my fault. So, as I walked into the bathroom of my high school, I stood there. Peaceful. With blood flowing down my wrists I thought I would finally win. But in a moment, I was surrounded by so many people and ambulances and all of these people talking and asking questions and making appointments for me and I couldn’t really hear anyone. I couldn’t really see anyone. I heard my mom agreeing to so many people and trying to make heads or tails of it. And as I sat there with my wrists bandaged, staring into nowhere I finally heard a voice. It was a voice inside. A voice telling me that I didn’t deserve this. A voice reminding me I had dreams. A voice telling me that I was meant to do great things and would still. A voice who believed in me. A voice who showed me my self-worth was more than this. The next day, I smiled and meant it. I laughed a felt it. I didn’t know the name at the time but it was clearly the first time I had ever felt my Hero Within.