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This I Believe

KUHF-Houston Public Radio’s “This I Believe” with Adriana Hernandez

Adriana is a 17 year old senior at Challenge Early College High School. It’s associated with Houston Community College and when Adriana graduates in the spring, she’ll not only receive her high school diploma but also an Associates Degree. Adriana’s essay is about her grandmother’s struggle with Alzheimer’s. Adriana is realizing how the disease affects the entire family and how precious time can be.


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Adriana is the youngest of four…two sisters and a brother. She’s the baby of the family and her mother can’t believe she’s about to graduate from high school. Adriana’s father wants her to pursue medical school, but Adriana is leaning toward dental school. She wants to become a dentist. She’d be the first in her family to do so.

Here’s Adriana Hernandez with her essay for KUHF’s This I Believe.
“You know the saying, ‘you don’t know what you’ve got till it’s gone?’ Well, I believe this is true.

My grandmother is 84 years old…and she can’t do much on her own anymore. She’s been living with us for the past sixteen years after my grandfather passed away.

She practically raised me. My grandmother and I would spend hours working with wood, she taught me how to hammer nails and she even taught me how to sew dresses for my baby dolls. Without her I would have never learned to do this.

Till this day my mother says I am just like my grandmother; stubborn, independent, and I never let anyone tell me I can’t do something. It’s no wonder I’m like her…we spent a lot of time together.

She even taught me how to speak Spanish, which has opened many opportunities for me, even helping me get my first job. I remember all the fun we had while eating snacks including Fig Newtons. I never really liked them and I still don’t, but I always ate them just to make my grandmother happy. I remember walking to the dollar store in the summer and she would tell me, ‘no mas una cosa,’ only one thing, but she would always let me get more than one. I also remember when we would argue but now we look back and laugh at ourselves.

I have enjoyed the past sixteen years with my grandmother and one day I’ll pass on lessons she taught me to my own children and grandchildren.

Now as I watch my grandmother sitting in her rocking chair, I wish I could enjoy just one more day for us to do the things we used to…work with wood or sew little dresses for my baby dolls, eat snacks or just laugh with each other. I wish I would have cherished more time with her, before she began forgetting everything.

I believe you should cherish everything now rather than later, because once those you love begin to decline, it’s heartbreaking. This I believe.”