Three droning hours had passed constrained in a hard plastic seat in the examination room. My heart had started beating faster than the clock could tick, I gasped for air, and the room closed in on me. The door clicked open. The doctor walked in followed by two more people. They all activated the hand sanitizer machine by the door and soon the room filled up with the smell of alcohol. The doctor sat down in the chair in front of me, silently, and the others spread out around the room as if to make sure I would not escape. I heard the door click shut.
Eventually, Doctor Vargas calmly asked whether there were any residual feelings on my face. I nodded. She reached for my hand. I pulled away and took a deep breath. Doctor Vargas began, “You have Relapsing- remitting Multiple Sclerosis... now before you start to panic…” but it was too late. I stared blankly at the doctor, and her mouth was moving but no sound was coming out. I felt sick, relieved, and depressed. Doctor Vargas reached for my hand again and I felt a shock run through my body as I snapped back to reality. “Do you understand what I just said?” the doctor asked. I nodded out of instinct. The doctor continued regardless of my expressionless face. I sat there trying to understand why this had happened to me while my nodding became incessant. I got up to leave, shook her hand, and made my next appointment.
After a few weeks, I concluded that I would never be able to understand why this happened to me because there was no real answer. Being diagnosed at age eighteen with Multiple Sclerosis felt like the life I knew had come to a close, but not to an end. A whole new chapter of my life was commencing and I understood that I had control over it, not the disease. My diagnosis did not mean that I could leave behind everything that I had planned for and wanted in my life. This diagnosis only pushed me to pursue my dreams harder than before, because I knew that if a disease could not stop me than nothing will.
Since my diagnosis, I have begun taking medication regularly, in order to assure that my symptoms will not interfere with my daily life. As time went on I realized that as a first generation college student, I did not have the time nor the luxury to put something like multiple sclerosis, that is so relatively small compared to the multitude of other problems that exist in the world, in front of everything. My current major in Latin American and Latina/o Studies has taught me that Latinos face a lot of racial, social, and economic injustices that keep them from facing the laws that promote these injustices. Studying, and often times facing the social problems that are described in my classes have motivated me to go against these injustices by being a part of the group of people that help interpret the laws. My past experiences have pushed my focuses towards public interest law, ranging from human rights law to immigration law. My aspiration to join the legal career is tied closely with my want to better the lives of Latinos through the use of the law.
Furthermore, my voice in the legal profession will allow: people who are facing injustice to meet and talk to someone that has faced similar injustices, it will allow me to inspire future generations of underrepresented people to pursue a legal career as well, and it will allow me to repay my parents for every struggle they had to endure in order to help me get to the place I am today. With that, I hope whoever is reading enjoys this website, happy reading!