My philosophy for a happy life Sam Berns TEDxMidAtlantic
Hello everyone. I'm Sam, and I just turned 17. A few years ago,before my freshman year in High School, I wanted to play snare drumin the Foxboro High School Marching Band, and it was a dreamthat I just had to accomplish. But each snare drum and harness weighed about 40 pounds each,
and I have a disease called Progeria. So just to give you an idea,I weigh only about 50 pounds. So, logistically, I really couldn't carrya regular sized snare drum, and because of this the band directorassigned me to play pit percussion during the halftime show. Now pit percussion was fun. It involved some really coolauxiliary percussion instruments, like the bongos, timpani,
and timbales, and cowbell. So it was fun, but it involved no marching,and I was just so devastated. However, nothing was going to stop me from playing snare drumwith the marching band in the halftime show. So my family and I workedwith an engineer to design a snare drum harness
that would be lighter,and easier for me to carry. So after continuous work, we made a snare drum apparatusthat weighs only about 6 pounds. (Applause) I just want to give you some moreinformation about Progeria. It affects only about350 kids today, worldwide. So it's pretty rare, and the effects of Progeria include:
tight skin, lack of weight gain,stunted growth, and heart disease. Last year my Mom and her team of scientists published the first successfulProgeria Treatment Study, and because of thisI was interviewed on NPR, and John Hamilton asked methe question: quot;What is the most important thing that people should know about youéquot;
And my answer was simply that I have a very happy life. (Applause) So even thoughthere are many obstacles in my life, with a lot of thembeing created by Progeria, I don't want people to feel bad for me. I don't think aboutthese obstacles all the time, and I'm able to overcomemost of them anyway.