When I put down Lance Armstrong’s book, I understood something profoundly. Edie, if you can move, you’re not sick. I decided right then and there that no matter what cancer did to me I would continue to move. Movement was what the physical body was designed to do; it was how it coped and functioned. Movement was vitality. It was life.
I would move. Always. No matter what. Until my last breath, I would move.

My friend Bailey is looking at me with tears in her eyes and a smile of pure joy. She sees me, the real me, not the broken little bird that my mother sees, or the Ambassador of Hope that my father sees, or the girl who was stupid enough to walk off with a stranger and ruin everyone’s lives that my sister sees. Bailey sees me as I want to be: a normal, non-newsworthy, non-broken, non-victimized sixteen-year-old girl.

Anyone who crawls up from the gutter and makes something of themselves, despite the odds and despite others who tried to keep them down, must always be very proud of their achievements. They must never forget the struggles they went through, because they are a living example to those who wander in darkness, a staunch reminder that light is within reach if they can find the strength and determination to keep going.

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