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What Essay Topics are Colleges Sick of Reading?


Replies to: What Essay Topics are Colleges Sick of Reading?

  • lpapadakislpapadakis Registered User Posts: 22 Junior Member
    Hi, this might be a little late in this thread, but I wanted to give my two cents. I pursued the illness route after not pursuing it the first time around (I'm transferring) and it worked because these essays were more me. I want to go in to medicine and what I went through growing up is why, so I often used that as my platform, or as my background being my life-changing moment etc (you know those prompts). Here is an example of one of those use a quote to describe a moment in your life that meant a lot:

    “No, you’re going in vain,” she mentally addressed a company in a coach-and-four who were evidently going out of town for some merriment. “And the dog you’re taking with you won’t help you. You won’t get away from yourselves.”—Anna Karenina, Leo Tolstoy

    There’s a look you get when people see your scars. Not the scars we term our bad moments, the emotional ones. No, these scars are physical, a tight line of soft, purplish bumps rising above your skin that looks stretched, as if one movement might tear that seam of flesh apart even though it’s been there for as long as you can remember. And if you didn’t know what to look for you might not notice the stares but you do know what to look for because you’ve seen it before. Not once. Not twice, but more times than you can count between your fingers and toes combined and you know that because that’s how you measured things when you were younger, when this all started, when you started to watch, and when you started to expect. It is an orchestra of looking: me looking at them, them looking at me, and avoiding, avoiding each other because don’t let her see the frown, the pinched brow, the wide eyes. Looking, watching, searching, frowning—they will do all of this until you become not just a girl with a scar, but a girl whose scars hold her together. This is the undeniable thought that you read from their faces when their sad, heavy eyes betray their stagnant smiles. No, I can’t read minds, but I can read people.

    By the time I was eight years old, I had eight visible scars. Today, I have nine. But sometimes what you see is not the full story. In fact, if nine is a quarter, the total is nearly forty; 9 visible, 31 not. Forty sutures. Forty operating rooms. Forty vital signs falling, falling, then crashing on the screens of monitors. Forty scars. Forty stories. And yes, scars are stories. These jigsaw lines crawl across my skin like a foreign language dances across the pages of a book, entirely unknown and therefore frightening, and still more, strikingly beautiful–I am a walking contradiction. My doctors called them “battle scars”, and looking down into the open face of my four-year-old self they would say “they make you tougher”. Too young to see the sadness that hid behind their masks, I smiled, grinning because I was special, grinning because I was strong. But now, standing there exposed, bare skin visible in the world beyond the locked doors of the pediatric ward, I forgot the way I had smiled, I forgot how amazing those lines are; what they show, what I faced, and what I overcame dissipates with just one look. Isn’t it funny how quickly that feeling can disappear beneath someone else’s gaze? And it is here where I exist suspended between the realms of beauty and terror, caught in a dichotomy of human nature where I don’t quite fit. So, what next?

    Next, you wear a bikini. At eighteen, I had avoided bikinis because of the obvious lack of clothing, a shortage of fabric which threatened to unveil what I so carefully hid. For years, I denied my past, hid beneath my smile, and pretended I was "normal". Until one day, I was tired. I was tired of hiding, tired of smiling, tired of searching endlessly to avoid the stares, the sad eyes, and rejecting my body. Yes, sometimes your body doesn’t obey your mind and sometimes it never will, but that day I realized it doesn’t even matter. You see, society may give you the cards, but only you can play them. So go ahead, put on your bikini, and make the one choice you have left: to finally choose you. And that day, I chose me.
  • hayisforhorsehayisforhorse Registered User Posts: 125 Junior Member
    Wow that’s beautiful @lpapadakis i really appreciate your advice!!
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