Humans of FHC: Gabby Bates

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Humans of FHC: Gabby Bates

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“Freshman year, I started getting sick, and the illnesses I would catch would get more intense. Then, the summer between freshman and sophomore year, I caught pneumonia for the third time in one year, and I ended up being in the hospital with it for a week, three of those nights being in the ICU. That’s when my doctors and specialists started getting on top of it, wondering why it was happening so much. They found out that I get asthma when I’m sick. I have immune deficiencies, so I have low IGG and low IGA, which means that my body doesn’t come back from illnesses the way that it should. I’ve done infusions for them; most of them gave me adverse side effects, so we’re still trying to figure out the right thing to fix it. My sinuses also have been swollen shut because of the way my sinuses are structured, so I recently got surgery for that. That’s probably why I want to go into medicine; I’ve gotten so many illnesses and have researched so many of them, and it’s really interesting to me.

I would say [what motivates me] is when people say that I can’t do something. I’ve had a lot of illness issues and immune deficiencies, which hinders my ability to go to school. I’ve had a lot of teachers tell me, ‘Oh, you shouldn’t take AP classes,’ or ‘You can take this class as pass or fail, do you want to dumb yourself down to regular [classes]?’ I’m pretty stubborn, and I like to prove people wrong; so, I’ve gotten pretty good at teaching myself, and I enjoy learning. I just have the drive to prove people wrong, and so far, it’s worked.

(Senior)

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