About the Author

My name is Hannah Thompson. I recently graduated from Elmhurst College with a B.A. in Communication. You can read about my college days at Hannah's College Adventures. I am a motivational speaker encouraging people to do their impossible. I was born with Cerebral Palsy and that does not stop me from doing anything! I am changing the world one audience at a time!

Monday, July 31, 2017

Soldier and Citizen

Soldier and Citizen

You are a soldier.
You face fires everyday
You face the sounds of bombs everyday
You face poor hygiene everyday
You face the boys and girls of Iraq who call you heroes
You face not seeing your family everyday
You face knowing you might have to hurt someone everyday
You face having your brother’s life on the line everyday
You face having your life on the line everyday
I am an American citizen
I am thankful for a peaceful Independence Day
I am thankful there is not a draft
I am thankful for your family’s selflessness
I am thankful for what you face everyday.
I am thankful that you are a soldier.

This is a very simple poem I wrote when I was a teenager. Let's be grateful we are Americans.


Friday, June 30, 2017

Loyola, Here I Come!

I had to keep quiet during Mother's Day brunch. I really did. This was something I needed to completely decide on my own but not telling anyone felt so foreign. I could tell anyone I wanted to tomorrow but I needed to make the decision to apply to Loyola University for myself. I would meet with the enrollment advisor tomorrow.  

 I had Googled graduate school programs for communication and advocacy and found a great program in West Virginia. That was not helpful. The term "social justice" kept coming up and Loyola also kept popping up with it. I decided to click on it. Loyola's Social Justice M.A.  program seemed perfect. It was all about being an agent of change. However, I didn't want to apply without visiting the campus. 

I requested an appointment with the enrollment advisor, Kristin. I gave myself three weeks out to visit Loyola in case I decided I didn't think Loyola was for me. If anything, graduate school had been intimidating. I knew it was not a joke. If I said yes, it would be hard work. Honestly, I missed the hesitation people had when I went to college. People were scared and doubtful that I could go to college. I had a blast proving otherwise. I missed that; I realize that is probably weird to hear but I missed the sheer determination it gave me. Whenever I asked people about graduate school, it was only encouragement. Dang it! 

When I visited the campus and the enrollment advisor, everything was perfect. I was well above the GPA requirement and I didn't have to take the GRE which was a complete relief. As if that wasn't enough, the advisor, Kristin had worked at Elmhurst College. We had already crossed paths! She ended the meeting by saying, "see you in the fall!" I would apply and then see if it was indeed God's will for me. 

A huge thank you to Gina and Jessica who was my writing tutors at Elmhurst College who helped me with my essay. Five weeks later, virtual maroon and gold confetti filled my computer screen. I was a GRADUATE STUDENT at Loyola University. 

I took a day to soak in the love on Facebook and then it was up to me to get everything in motion. I applied to the Office of Disabilities. I emailed Elmhurst and asked for the documentation I gave them in 2008. Maureen Connolly had retired so without her, the process was quick and easy. The new woman who worked at the office of disabilities at Elmhurst, Corrinne, and I emailed for three days straight. In the end, we decided Loyola should have two letters that my doctors wrote and a summary of my accommodations. I submitted the documentation and after an in-person meeting, my accommodations were set. It was weird to do this without my mom because she always helps but I knew I was more than capable.

I met with my academic advisor and I can't wait for classes to start at the end of August! 

Thank you to all who helped with recommendation letters, my essay, and finally, accommodations and documentation. It was a team effort. Finally, thanks to mom who pushed me to go to graduate school for five years! 

Let's do this thing, 

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

The Last Titan

With pomp and circumstance filling the auditorium and my little sister in her cap and gown, the last Glenbrook South titan of the Thompson family would graduate high school. 

Before the ceremony, we made memories by taking pictures in the backyard. I am grateful that I have a mother who takes the time to photograph occasions like these. As she confidently and beautifully strode across the stage, David, my little brother and I yelled as loud as we possibly could. It was such a wonderful moment! However, the ceremony was filled with mundane speeches. The distinguished alumni had been out of high school for 32 years so I have 23 years to earn that honor. I did the math multiple times during the ceremony just to make sure I had the right number. I promise to deliver to the class of 2040!

Genevieve has been the best little sister from day one. We all wrote Genevieve letters to commemorate her milestone. Here is mine: 

Dear Genevieve,

When you were born, I had an American Girl doll. On the day I held you for the first time, Mom asked me, “who do you like better”? I liked my baby sister much better than the doll. I loved Genevieve, my little sister.  You were so beautiful and I was so grateful I had a sister!

Growing up, we were a decade a part and you were such a fun part of our house. You liked the spotlight. In fact, you made a spotlight everywhere you went. Now, you’re putting that spotlight on people who need a voice. Let me assure you that you are the perfect voice for the voiceless. You are the epitome of integrity, strength, and pure and utter goodness.

You might notice when we go to D.C., you are the only teenage sister there. Even if you don’t notice, I do. I’m extremely blessed to have you as a voice and a little sister. You are a force to be reckoned with and I pity anyone who tries to stop the good you are doing. Hopefully, people are smarter than to mess with you.

I look forward to having a front row seat to your adult life. We have incredible parents who taught us right from wrong, how to treat people, and most of all, they taught us how to love deeply and wholly. The guidelines they taught us have helped me in every aspect of my life. I know they will help you throughout college and the rest of your life.

Right now, I can’t stop bragging about how authentically awesome you are. I’m proud to call you my little sister and fellow advocate.

You are my sister. You are my best friend. You had a piece of my heart as Mom let me hold you for the first time, that piece has only gotten bigger.

I love you,

God bless and good luck to all the graduates of 2017! Do amazing things! 


P.S. The next post will be about Loyola, I promise!