The Difficult And Miraculous Life Of Helen Keller

2842 words - 12 pages

The sixth president, John Quincy Adams stated, "If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more, and become more, you are a leader" (Inspire Quotes). An individual one should admire is someone that inspires people to do great works. A good leader is a person who has gone through challenging situations and has overcome them. Helen Adams Keller proved that the odds were not against her. She learned to read, write, and spell all while she was blind and deaf. As a young child, she was referred to as a "tiny tyrant" that should be put into an asylum (Garret 32). With the help of her teacher, Helen Keller would be transformed from a tyrant to a beautiful woman who many looked up to.
Helen Keller had a frightening start to her childhood. She was born on June 27, 1880 in Alabama on her family's farm. Her parents were Captain Author and Kate Keller. Keller had four siblings; two were half brothers from her father's first marriage and then two younger siblings. She was a bright and happy baby and began to walk early. Tragically, before the age of two she became ill (Stevenson par. 2). "Brain fever" had almost taken Keller’s life. It took several days for her fever to break and for her to recover. Everyone was grateful that their little girl had survived. But no one knew what was yet to come after the illness left Keller (Garret 10). This would be the first of many battles for Helen Keller.
After the brain fever had gone, Helen Keller’s condition was unknown. One day when her mother checked on her, the sun was shining directly in Keller’s eyes but she did not turn away. Kate quickly determined that Keller was blind. A few days later, the family was gathered for dinner. Normally Keller loved to eat as soon as the dinner bell rang. This day the bell rang and Keller did not even notice. Curious and worried, Kate shook a rattle near Keller’s ear. Nothing happened. They knew then the illness had left Keller blind and deaf. Her life would never be easy (Garret 11). Helen Keller’s life was about to be changed, and her response to adversity would earn her the admiration of many.
For the next four years Helen Keller was isolated in the dark and silence (Stevenson par. 3). Once reality hit Keller, that she was trapped in her own world, she was no longer her bright and happy self. Daily she would throw tantrums by kicking and screaming. All of their family and friends thought she should be put into an asylum because of her behavior. The only person who refused to give up on Keller was her mother. Keller depended on Kate for everything and would imitate her father such as reading the newspaper and wear his glasses (Garret 12). Being deaf and blind was an enormous obstacle, especially when it came time for her to be educated. Keller made her own hand signs to tell others what she needed. She had made more than sixty signs, such as buttering bread for bread, shivering for ice cream and stroking cheek for mother. Even though Keller could not speak,...

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