“One wintry morning of 1983, I quietly arrived to the world, with wide eyes searching my surroundings for the first time, seeking something that wouldn’t be found till twenty-five years later. What I did find was the best jewel God has bestowed upon me, when my eyes met that of my mother, Juliet Cheng, who would be first to rejoice with me when I finally discovered what I had sought.
Before we could celebrate over my find, challenges soon filled our lives, like a looming mountain range we always have to climb. The range began with a tuberculin skin test I received when I was eleven months old. Five days after the shot, I developed a very high fever, followed by red, swollen joints and cries that hammered against Mother’s heart. I had just contracted severe juvenile rheumatoid arthritis.
By my thirteenth month of life, I was knocking on death door. Seeing that American medicines offered no relief for me without causing retrograde effects, Mother took me to China six times in a span of ten years to seek treatment. By doing so, she had saved my life numerous times, for the crippling disease had rapidly spread to nearly all of my joints; like a statue, I was unable to move or sit, and every tiniest jolt sent pain throughout my body that cut like knives.
Once prevailing over my physical pain by age eleven on the never-ending dosage of Mother’s unconditional love, I encountered a new set of challenges–starting school for the very first time. Back then, I knew only my ABCs and that two plus two equaled four and that three times five made fifteen; I had no idea from where rain came and why a beautiful rainbow followed, so I was placed in a special education class in elementary school.
Since my spirit was uncontaminated by depression or sadness, it was open to freely absorb knowledge, like crystal clear water effortlessly flowing through a mud-free river.
Therefore, after about 180 days of attendance, I mastered grade level and entered regular sixth grade in middle school, where I was the Student of the Year in sixth grade, Student of the Month in seventh grade, and where I received an excellence award for achieving the highest grade of ninety-seven in Earth science in eighth grade.
I then entered high school with a smile that spoke a thousand words. It was in high school when something divine happened: the loss of my eyesight.
No, I didn’t consider it so divine at first, when I became blind at age seventeen. Yet, I wasn’t –and still am not–bitter. Just as with my inability to walk, I’m never scornful for losing my sight. Instead, I’m grateful for having owned this gift before. But in any case, how could I possibly view the loss of my eyesight a divine turn of events? I had not discovered the value of this challenge until years later…..”
Shirley Cheng is one of thirty individuals sharing her story in the new ebook “Living the Life of My Dreams: Essays & Interviews with 30 Ordinary People Living EXTRAordinary Lives ~ Their Lessons Learned & How-to Secrets Revealed. Interviewed & Compiled by Caryn FitzGerald.
Each of these individuals has faced challenges head on and redirected their life by choice, not chance. They brought to reality the life they were able to see in their dreams. Now, they share the lessons they learned from these experiences and their how-to secrets with the world. So often people feel lost or uncertain when their lives seem to spiral out of control. There is no reason to live life in this manner. It only takes a moment to regain direction and these thirty people are here to share their success stories and guidance with you.
Read the rest of Shirley Cheng’s story and learn first hand from people who have created the life of their dreams and are now sharing their wisdom.
Download your copy of “Living the Life of My Dreams: Essays & Interviews with 30 Ordinary People Living EXTRAordinary Lives ~ Their Lessons Learned & How-to Secrets Revealed” at: Living the Life of My Dreams. today!
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