This I Believe

Chelsey - Fithian, Illinois
Entered on September 21, 2006
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: setbacks

While aimlessly searching the internet one night I came upon a quote that has had a major impact on my life and the way I think. The quotation is: “The dearest of life is so often cast aside and the sorrows of it brought to the attention more than what is good. I hope that people will wake up and realize that they can make their lives better. Happiness is not a thing by chance but by choice.” This one quote is something I hold dear to me and what I focus on whenever I start to feel down.

Throughout my life I have seen so many people complain about their lives when the only thing wrong with it is their attitude. I believe that happiness is available for everyone if only they try to focus on the bright side. I have found that it is much better to live my life understanding that I have problems but that dwelling on them won’t help. When I entered high school, I had dreams planned and was beginning to really make my life worth something.

But then I heard the tragic news that would unravel my carefree world forever. My father was diagnosed with Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. My entire life began to fall apart, and I started suffering from what I would believe to be a mild depression. Many times during the day at school I would become very down-hearted and even a few times I would break down and cry because I couldn’t find any other way to handle the pain. But as the year went by, with the support of my friends, I got a little better even though my dad got worse. During my sophomore year, I started to really become more cheerful. During Christmas time of my junior year, my dad was told that there was no cure for his cancer. Consequently on January 8th, he passed away.

Because my father died, I believe that in life we must first experience unhappy times in order to fully appreciate the good times. I would rather have a life filled with problems but face them with courage than to have lived only good times. For having faced the death of my father at 16 taught me that it is not our problems that hold us back in life, but the way we handle them.