This I Believe

Robyn - Wichita, Kansas
Entered on November 15, 2006

You Are In Control

Many people often use their family background and difficulties as an excuse for their current failures. I believe that no matter what the circumstances people can succeed if they are determined to do so.

I come from a relatively low-income family and my parents divorced when I was in the second grade. I have spent the majority of my life going back and forth between Mom’s house and Dad’s house and have gone through two ugly custody battles, on top of all this I also have an autistic brother. However minor these experiences may seem compared to someone else’s story, they have had a large impact on my life and have shaped a great part of who I am as an individual.

Faced with even these difficulties, many a person might have lost the drive to chase after their own desires simply because they believe that it is a hopeless cause. They may let their grades slip in school or not go to college. Some even end up spending the rest of their lives taking any job that they can get just to make it by. On the other hand there are the other people, people like me who despite the hardships gone through still try their hardest to succeed in life. I am a junior in the International Baccalaureate program and aspire to be a counselor someday. Has my life been easy? No, but I refuse to let that ruin my future. I am in control of my life and I choose to work hard and succeed. As a counselor, I will be able to relate to others who would be going through the same things that I have gone through. Having an autistic brother has enabled me to see that everyone is different and that is okay. I have also found that I am more defensive of special needs people simply because I can relate.

I control my life. That is all that there is to it. I simply cannot allow events such as a divorce or a custody battle ruin my entire future. These things may have seemed big at the time they were going on, but I have realized that in the grand scheme of things these events are really quite small. The past is set; I cannot change it any more than anyone else can can. The past does change us, but we are in control of just how much it does. I am determined to succeed, and I will.