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From "Class Dummy" to Pediatric Neurosurgeon

We all love an underdog story. And who doesn't want to think that someone can pick themselves up from nothing to become achieve their wildest dreams. I believe that the American Dream is alive and well in America and Dr. Ben Carson's life serves as a fine example.

I picked up the book, Gifted Hands to share with our students at Tiger-Rock Martial Arts. There are so many good life-lessons that are shared that everyone could benefit from, but especially young children.

Dr. Carson is a brilliant Pediatric Neurosurgeon, but he faced several trials and tribulations in his early life that make many wonder how he was able to make it so far as an accomplished Physician. Having been raised by a single mother who cleaned homes from dawn until dusk, Ben would sometimes not see his mother for several days at a time. Fortunately, Ben and his brother, Curtis were kept by his loving aunt and uncle. Ben was called the "class dummy" and the kids made fun of him, and sometimes even the teachers.

His mother sat Ben and Curtis down one day and told them that she has seen the insides of many successful people's homes, and that they are no different than them. She did remark that they did not watch much tv and they read a lot. She decided that whatever her kids decided to do, they were going to be the best in the world.

Ben and Curtis hated that their mother made them read books and write reports about their learning, but it paid off in the end. Because Ben had been reading so much, he realized that he could be one of the "smart kids", and he found the confidence that he needed to thrive.

We will share some of Dr. Ben Carson's story in classes this week during our mat chats. We strive to include inspiring stories like this for our students, because our goal is to get each of our students performing their best. I would suggest this book for your Junior Martial Arts Programs.

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