The Strength Behind a Single Cell

When I was in ninth grade, I had two general interests in school: science and mathematics.  While I was essentially forced to take geometry and biology, I took it upon myself to take an introduction to engineering class.  I enjoyed the work, my classmates, and the teacher, but it was just as much as I “enjoyed” my other classes.  However, in my biology class one day, my teacher began to explain the “simple” structures of the plant and animal cell.  “The powerhouse of the cell is the Mitochondria,” and, “The chlorophyll in the chloroplasts is what allows the plants to have green stems, from the reflected light,” are phrases that captured the ideas of my new outlook on the world.  Cells are known as the basic building blocks of all biotic organisms.  Cells are the reason we are able to answer questions, write papers and use basic motor functions.  But that very day in biology, my view on the surrounding world changed forever.

Since that day, I am intrigued by how the littlest things, from the basic building blocks allowing us to survive, to the M and Z lines in my muscles, create the world I live in today.  I believe that the tiniest components of life show the biggest impact on the world. Without the comprehension of these cells and components, the world would be without rhyme or reason, with no strength to survive and flourish.  The world would be an endless mystery, doomed to end in chaotic madness.

That being said, I continued on in AP biology in my tenth-grade year.  My teacher explained the “never ending” workload and the “extreme” difficulty that the class entailed, but I chose to ignore the speech.  I was beyond charmed by the functions of the human body.  I was fascinated by how the M line and the Z lines in the muscles can be pulled together to contract, allowing full movement of my arm.  I was mesmerized by how the Sodium-Potassium pump in the body allows my cells to get the ATP needed to survive and reproduce.  Throughout my AP biology course, I was taking chemistry as well, as a sort-of introduction to molecules and components.  I remember walking in and smelling the sulfur on the days of labs and (almost) setting my hair on fire when the everlasting, white flame of the magnesium strip would not burn out.  However, I was ever so trying not to fall asleep in chemistry.  I would open my prep book and come up with rhymes and reasons to remember that the Mitochondria dealt with ATP synthesis, while the nucleus contained the DNA.

The boring, falling asleep, lectures in other classes told me that I needed to strive to learn and comprehend the small stuff.  That the world was not strictly things seen with the naked eye, but it was things seen deep below.  I know that I will not be able to understand every molecule and every cell that make up the universe.  However, I do believe that without the world’s scientific knowledge of DNA or cells, I would be at a loss, because cells hold the power to create me.  Cells hold my genetic makeup, my genes, my personality, my life.  Without the understanding of the small components in life, I don’t believe I would understand myself.  I believe in the small things, because they make the most important things in life, such as me.