This I Believe

Shannon - Marietta, Georgia
Entered on December 13, 2006
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: family

One month ago, my dad announced to the family that he had received a job offer in Guatemala for six months. Although my mom, sister, and I would not be going with him, I couldn’t bear the thought of being separated for that long. Three weeks later, I sat with my extended family and watched my dad show us videos of what he would be doing and who he would be helping. I hid my tears behind a pillow because I didn’t want him to go, but I knew how happy it made him. At that moment, the pillow was the only support I had. Sometimes it seems as if pillows are the only constant support I’ll ever have.

I believe in pillows because they’ll never lie, they’ll never leave, and they’ll support you despite all odds. I believe this as much as I believe in the support of others, but the difference between the support of pillows and the support of others is the consistency. At some point, there’s going to be that one person who you believe will always be there, and at some point, they’re probably going to let you down. And when they do, most people choose to lean on their pillow for support.

Every day I watch my dad struggle over taking the job offer, and I turn away because it’s clear what he wants to do. My friends don’t want to listen to me vent. I don’t want to think about it. I find this happens to most people in dilemmas. Teenagers are too pre-occupied with themselves and with their own problems to support anyone else. So, in turn, pillows across the nation are wet from tears, ripped from anger, and torn from indecision.

In one lifetime, the average person will influence around 10,000 people. How many of them consistently supported you through the hardest times in your life? One, maybe two. In a lifetime, the average person will sleep on hundreds of pillows. How many of them supported you through the hardest times in your life? Every last one. The people who go through life with the support of only a pillow are often times stronger than those who lean on others for everything, but they’re rarely happier. These same people spend their lives trying to figure out the secret to being happy. I believe the secret is finding that one person that’s never going to let you down. Through them comes support, through support comes strength, and through strength comes character. I believe in pillows, but more importantly, I believe in support from others.