When I Was Born | Teen Ink

When I Was Born MAG

March 4, 2009
By Brad Baskin BRONZE, Solon, Ohio
Brad Baskin BRONZE, Solon, Ohio
1 article 0 photos 0 comments

When I was born, I wasn't supposed to live past my childhood.
Someone must have missed something, 'cause I lived 'til 46.
It attacked my lungs; it was hard to breathe.
The aerosols helped a little, though.

At times, everyday tasks seemed impossible,
but I fought, and so I succeeded.
They thought I wouldn't even see my teenage years!
So who would ever think I could not only run but place in a 5K race?

Who would ever think I would be an athlete?
Who would ever think I could shoot, run, pass, and dribble?
Who would ever think I could pitch a fastball or make it curve?
They thought my limit was grade school, but I knew it was the sky.

They saw me work five jobs.
They saw me go to college, and they saw me pass the bar.
The saw me meet my wife, saw me marry, saw my children,
and saw me go beyond the places they thought I could never go!

So I did the unthinkable!
I became the inspiration of countless children and their families.
They saw me achieve! They saw me succeed!
They saw how nothing held me back; they saw how nothing slowed my stride.
They saw me on the Cleveland branch; saw me as chairman of the events;
saw me on the National Board, committed to a goal, committed to a cure.
For sixty-five roses.
For cystic fibrosis.

When I was born, who would have thought I would live to 46?
They saw me run; they saw me jump; they saw me fly; they saw me soar.
They saw me keep my head up high despite all the obstacles in my way.
They saw me destroy those obstacles! They saw me as their inspiration.

And they see the legacy I leave. They see the difference I have made.
I am still their inspiration, and in their hearts I live forever.
So they saw me fight, unwavering 'til those last words never spoken:
“I'm not afraid to die; don't be afraid to live.”

This poem was inspired by my father, who had cystic fibrosis. Because my dad viewed himself as a normal person instead of a CF patient, he excelled. He showed others with the disease that despite the hardships, they could do anything they wanted. At age 46 my father passed away from complications from a lung transplant and CF. Though he couldn't speak at the end, he wrote his last words. They are the quote at the end of my poem.

The author's comments:
This poem is about and dedicated to my father, Bruce, who passed away on April 29, 2005. He battled the respiratory disease Cystic Fibrosis, and he never stopped fighting. He is a pioneer as a patient and inspires many CF patients today. The final line of the poem are his last words, word for word, as said to my mother. We all miss him, and this poem is for him.

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This article has 9 comments.

rheame said...
on Jun. 1 2015 at 2:50 am
rheame, Anand, Other
0 articles 0 photos 64 comments

Favorite Quote:
turn a mess into a lesson

a test into testimony

a trial into triumph
and a victim into champion

a wonderful , inspiring poem! hats off !!

theauther65 said...
on May. 11 2010 at 10:07 pm
I don't know what to say. That's really meaningful that this poem that I wrote for school, that I was required to submit to a writing contest, that would probobly never be in existance if it wasn't for the assignment I had, made such an impact. I should thank my english teacher from last year. It's good to know that it helped you out Shawn. My dad died almost exactly 5 years ago - April 29th is the date - and he is proof that it's possible to live as a person not just as a person with CF. Remember that. I doubt I'll ever be as successful as my dad was in any way. Financially and most importantly morally and within his character. He was truly rich in that way and made so many other lives richer. I'm really really glad and touched that my emotions-made-words have touched you.

Shawwn84 said...
on May. 11 2010 at 7:35 pm
I have CF to and this made my day when I read it...I am 15 right now...so this helped a lot with everything Thank you Brad

on May. 3 2010 at 4:15 pm
IsobelFree DIAMOND, Hamilton, Other
71 articles 20 photos 296 comments

Favorite Quote:
"As long as there is open road, the familiar has the most formidable competitor." - Anonymous

I am so sorry about your dad. Wonderful article. Best wishes, <3

Orlene BRONZE said...
on Feb. 8 2010 at 4:31 pm
Orlene BRONZE, Phx, Arizona
4 articles 0 photos 4 comments

Favorite Quote:
The truth is you don't know what is going to happen tomorrow. Life is a crazy ride, and nothing is guaranteed. - Eminem

i love this! great job i am speechless! keep writing

on Feb. 4 2010 at 6:19 pm
TheUnknownGuest GOLD, Woodbridge, Virginia
14 articles 4 photos 110 comments

Favorite Quote:
I can't remember it clearly, but it went something like this:

"The past is the past, the future is the furture. But now, now is like a gift, which is why it is called present."

Wow.... I'm speechless. This is just wonderful! I'm proud of you, writing about your dad; seeing the good side and never the bad. I'm sure he would be so proud as well! :)

on Feb. 4 2010 at 9:17 am
GingerbreadMan SILVER, Odenton, Maryland
5 articles 1 photo 1 comment
I really liked ur poem..it was very inspiring..u should write more

on Jan. 27 2010 at 3:56 pm
AdamElyan BRONZE, Ramalah, Other
1 article 0 photos 2 comments

Favorite Quote:
Still the pen stuck in my hand ! but it keeps forgetting what it wrote down.
Once I wrote for the first time, I only felt my strong was escaping .
This new world I’d been around was turning clockwise backward, I noticed that all was unreal, but I tried so hard and I got every nothing I wanted all along.
I started to remind my self - it was me –, but everything was not like what it was before.
Some how I started to believe what I was living, but I didn’t get a chance to believe I’d survive, this situation made my life fake and made me feels like a maid in the whole castle that she owns, I couldn’t attack this anymore, I admit it! I Woke Up !

I JUST I JUST I JUST fell in Love of it ! =|

Sam/abe SILVER said...
on Mar. 16 2009 at 7:29 pm
Sam/abe SILVER, Barton-le-clay, Other
7 articles 0 photos 20 comments
wow. Amazing.