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The Story of My Life

by Helen Keller

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Why does Helen call the day "eventful" in The Story of My Life?

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A few synonyms for eventful in this context would be: significant, momentous, important, historic, consequential, and fateful. All these words imply that the day which Helen refers to stood out from anything else that happened before and that it would influence her destiny to such an extent that her life would be irrevocably changed forever from that day. The day would forever stand out as something special. 

At the beginning of chapter four, Helen mentions that the day, 3 March 1887, was to be the most important in her life, which emphasizes the point made above. She specifically states the following:

The most important day I remember in all my life is the one on which my teacher, Anne Mansfield Sullivan, came to me.

The arrival of Ms. Sullivan would have a dramatic impact on Helen's life. Helen herself declares in the text that Ms. Sullivan "was to set my spirit free." She had been selected to teach Helen on the advice of Mr. Anagnos after Helen's father had asked him whether a teacher for Helen, who was both deaf and blind, could be found. Ms. Sullivan had, at the time, been in the service of the Perkins Institute in Boston, where Dr. Howe, "who had discovered the way to teach the deaf and blind" had achieved amazing success. He had left behind a legacy of methods to help those devoid of sight or hearing. 

Ms. Sullivan's teaching would, through her hard work and dedication as well as Helen's desire to learn, result in Helen's discovering how to read, write, and speak, despite the major disabilities that she had. Helen would become an inspirational public speaker and an outstanding example of someone who has beaten the odds. In the process, she became a guiding light, a catalyst, and a muse for many disenchanted and disabled individuals throughout the world, not only during her lifetime but, most certainly, for all time.

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Helen refers to the day as an eventful one because it was on that day that her teacher, Anne Mansfield Sullivan, came into her life.

In Chapter Four, Helen recalls the day as the most important day in all her life. It was the third of March in 1887, and Helen was three months shy of reaching her seventh year of life. She testifies that the moment of her first meeting with Anne Sullivan was one filled with light and love.

Helen remembers that, on that eventful day, Anne Sullivan gave her a doll and opened up the world of language to her by spelling out the word on Helen's hand. On that day, Helen proclaims that she also learned other words, words that made the world a new place for her.

I learned a great many new words that day. I do not remember what they all were; but I do know that mother, father, sister, teacher were among them – words that were to make the world blossom for me, "like Aaron's rod, with flowers." It would have been difficult to find a happier child than I was as I lay in my crib at the close of the eventful day and lived over the joys it had brought me, and for the first time longed for a new day to come.

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