I believe that God puts people in your life for a reason. In life, we meet the most unexpected people. However, the person who change my life was my grandmother. She was the person who taught me many life lessons. My grandmother, Irene Smith, was an admirable woman with many accomplishments. I looked up to her every single day of my life.
Irene was born on June 18, 1924 in Greenville, Maine. When she was just twenty years old, in 1944, she joined the United States Navy. During this time, there were requirements for women. They could only join the military at age twenty and they had to get out of the war once it ended. She has so many qualities who makes her an influential person in my life. My grandma, also known as “Gameen” to all her grandchildren, was supportive, adaptive, and selfless. Unfortunately, I lost my grandmother to pancreatic cancer in 2011. Her memories still continue to make us laugh and smile every day.
One of the greatest qualities my grandmother had, was her support for her family. One of the greatest accomplishments she had was that both of her brothers served with her during her time in the military. For her it was a great feeling to know she had a support system, while doing something for her country. Returning the favor, she was a great person to encourage people to follow your dreams.
Any time one of her grandkids had a soccer or baseball game, dance recital, or any special event she would attend. Ever since I was four years old, she would show up to our Grandparent’s Day at our school. This was very special to me, because she would always have a smile on her face when she saw me. I have a picture on my dresser that is very close to my heart, which is from the first Grandparent’s Day at my school. The relationship between my grandmother and I was very special.
Not only was my grandmother very supportive, she had the most incredible ability to adapt to change. She was French-Canadian and her parents knew little English when they migrated to America. She couldn’t pronounce words when she went to school. When she was in the fourth grade, her teacher made her stay in at lunch to learn proper English. As her English improved, she was able to do more jobs and have more life experiences. This story that she told us made me realize that I should be more patient with people. It also made me realize that change is possible if you are determined to change it.
When I was in the fifth grade, I decided to change from recreational soccer to club soccer. This was a big change for me, because I never thought I could become better at a sport than I already was good at. Even though I thought playing for a club team was going to be harder, I knew that becoming better in a sport that I love was important to me. This was the moment I realized that my grandmother was right. Change is good if you are open to the idea of bettering yourself to the fullest potential you can reach.
Lastly, Gameen was one of the most selfless people in every way possible. She would always do things for others before herself. Whenever we went to the store, she would always ask us if we needed anything for school, such as lunch money or school supplies. Gameen would offer her own bed up, if it meant us kids were going to sleep comfortably. As a result of her selflessness, I learned to use her lessons and share them with the people around me. I have played soccer since I was three years old. Since my grandmother demonstrated this quality to me, I learned to share this gift with my teammates. Some ways I show it are by celebrating team victories, helping a teammate learn new skills, and taking the time and effort to support and learn new things about my teammates. Every time I would score a goal I would think about my grandmother and devote the goal to her.
In conclusion, my grandmother has so many characteristics that created her personality. Not only did she have an impact on my life, but she had a huge influence on the people around her. People enjoyed her jokes, stories, and comical comments. The traits that she was able to share with me in my eleven short years that she was with me, I learned key qualities to be a likeable person. She was able to show me all the outlooks on life and I am greatly appreciated. People who knew her will continue to tell her stories and share her experiences that she had throughout her life.