- Route: Rockies
- Ride Year: 2018
- Hometown: Katy
- School Year: Senior
- Major: Nutrition, Pre-dental
- Email: email@example.com
My favorite breakfast: extra light and fluffy pancakes(make it extra special with whipped cream and delicious berries), crispy crunchy golden shredded hash browns(well, crispy on the outside and fluffy on the inside), and 2% reduced fat milk!
I’m pursuing Nutrition with hopes to go to dental school and get involved with oral cancer research. Helping others develop and maintain their smiles is a life changing process that I can not wait to be part of and I love the hands-on, critical thinking, and artistic aspects of it. I chose nutrition because I believe that it is important to promote healthy lifestyles in children because they develop habits at an early age and healthy eating habits play such a big role in oral hygiene. I love how everyone smiles in the same language and how everyone has a beautiful and unique smile like their stories, making their spirit come alive. To me, a smile is like the sunshine, a smile is the best make-up a girl can wear, a smile is warmer than any scarves. Seeing people smile absolutely makes my days and as someone who likes to be around other people and doing something active, I hope to spread my passion through impacting people’s lives and develop relationships with people around me!
Thanks for taking your precious time to read my profile and can't wait to share more about this journey.
-With lots lots lots of Love, Cindy Eunji Lee
PS. Let's go get brunch:)
Why I Ride
When the dry winter came, my house was always filled with overpowering scents of garlic and pepper. My grandmother would travel all over the town to get the best leafy cabbages. Making Kimchi, a traditional fermented Korean side dish, was an important tradition that has been passed down for centuries and was a serious deal for her every year. She spent days trimming the cabbages by removing brown leaves with her bare, wrinkled hands, then soaking each section with salted water.
However the following winter, my family and I could no longer smell the vinegary sourness in the barren house. The house felt too still and empty without her. In December of 2007, my dear grandmother got diagnosed with brain and oral cancer. The effects of these diseases devastated her health. They caused her to be in diapers everyday, caused her to shave her beautiful hair, caused her to not be able to put on make-ups anymore, and caused her to keep forgetting who her family was. I remember when my mom came home and started just crying on my shoulders. I had no idea how to comfort or react. She said, “Your Halmoni(grandmother in Korean) doesn’t remember who I am, Cindy, do you think her memory will come back?” and I just could not help but helplessly and softly cry.
My Halmoni was one of those people who everyone liked, her personality shined through her actions in the community. After a long downhill slide into poor health and pain, my dearest grandmother passed away. I cried harder than any of the hundred or so people at the funeral. It was the hardest moment of my life and I felt like someone who I trusted and cared for was taken away from me. It took my family years to be able to eat normally, talk normally, and not cry whenever we thought of her. I’m honestly still in the process of mourning. But with many of us mourning and sharing the same feelings about her death and what she meant to our lives, I recognized how much she had impacted the world, and how deeply she had impacted me.
Few years later since my dear Halmoni passed away and upon first stepping my feet on UT, God brought me many angels into my life through Texas THON(For The Kids forever) and I realized I wanted to do everything I could and can to give opportunities to children, sisters, and brothers like these kids. I want every kid to have the same opportunities that I have had. I truly believe that every kid deserves a childhood where anything is possible.
I RIDE to honor and share these stories and RIDE for those who lost their loved ones to cancer. I RIDE for not only for my Halmoni and kids at Children's Miracle Network hospitals, but also for every family that has been affected by this horrible disease because it reminds me who I am, where I come from, and where I am going with my life. I became thankful for not only the recipes, but also their gifts of smiles, fun, laughter, and love. The way my Halmoni created a wave with her love and passion challenged me to be as loving to others as she was to me. I RIDE to pass on and continue her affection and love for the community because her extraordinary kindness taught me that she still lives through me and our relationship will go on and ripple into the future. Also each family and kids in Texas THON will always hold a place in my heart and I have hope, courage, and faith that every miracle kid will have the opportunity to be a kid again. With them and millions of others that have been affected by cancer, I RIDE to make a difference in this war against cancer. I RIDE to many opportunities to meet new people and to learn in order to keep serving the community that I sometimes take for granted. I RIDE to spread love. I RIDE for hope, knowledge, and charity.
Lastly, although Texas 4000 is not a Christian-affiliated organization, I ride for love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control in our Lord because he is more than worthy of our faith and hope. "who through him are believers in God, who raised him from the dead, and gave him glory, so that your faith and hope are in God" 1 Peter 1:21