This I Believe

Valerie - Arlington Ht.s, Illinois
Entered on September 13, 2006
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: carpe diem, death

I believe in living each day to they fullest. I live in a world where people don’t try to make each day the best they can. I live in a world where people put things off for tomorrow. I live in a family where the life expectancy of a person is not that long and you never know if you will live to see tomorrow.

There is only one cousin left on my mom’s side of the family, all the rest have past on. This is the fact of life but they didn’t live long lives; dying in there forties. They never knew the exact date that would be their last. Every day that they woke up was a miracle.

I have never known my grandma and grandpa. I was always the kid who didn’t have any one to write about when asked to make a book about everything that grandparents do. I never got to sleep over at grandma’s or have her give me money when I complained that I had none and then say the same thing to grandpa and have him give me some more.

I miss them dearly but the thing that I have gotten from all their deaths is to live each day to the fullest and never put things off for tomorrow. There may not be a tomorrow. Who knows if I will die in my sleep or when I try and watch a friends recital or even when I go to work. I will never know when my time is up. Most of us don’t.

A couple of weeks ago a 16-year-old boy was driving down Schoenbeck Rd. with two of his buddies. They were playing poker earlier and decided to get some sodas and snacks at the local Walgreen’s thinking they would be back in ten minutes. They were wrong. They never made it back. As they were coming home, another driver who went through a red light struck them. One died on impact, another went to the hospital and his condition was unknown, and the third boy only had minor injuries.

I knew the boy who died. He was a good kid who loved life. Who would have thought that just getting a soda would be deadly. It made me realize that I will never know if I will make it home from work that day or school. Every time I go out I am playing with fate.

To me, living each day to the fullest is being proud of all the things you have done that day. It’s going to bed and not worrying that I should have done something differently and I was disappointed in the outcome in the way I handled a situation. It’s feeling confident that I did the best that I could have done.

I believe life should be lived to the fullest. I believe in making each day the best that it can be. I hope that I will wake up tomorrow but I don’t know for sure. I believe in being thankful for today because who knows if tomorrow will come.