I have a huge imagination. I love to think that Santa is real, princesses live minutes away, and that miracles really do happen. As a child I dreamt of Santa’s workshop and raindrops that were lemon drops and gumdrops. Not only did I dream, I believed. I believed in the tooth fairy, the Easter bunny, in Santa Clause, his elves and even in his reindeer. As I grew older these beliefs began to shift. Learning one at a time that these were not factual beliefs, I asked myself… “What is there really to believe in?” After my flood of tears over the shattering thoughts of Santa’s workshop, I asked myself that question. My beliefs shifted from the imaginary to the extraordinary, to my family, friends, and ultimately God.
I believe that there is always something to believe in. If you wake up late, spill coffee on your outfit, and are yet to check items off your “List of Things to Do” there is still the belief in a better afternoon. If your morning goes sour there is belief that your family will welcome you home. In every circumstance there is something better to hope for, strive for, and to believe in.
As a child the worst thing that could happen was that there were no cookies and milk. As a teenager it’s a fight with a best friend, forgetting homework, or having too much to do and not enough time. As we grow older our responsibilities get tougher and our ability to believe becomes narrower. As children we simply listened. If our parents said “If you’re good all year, Santa will bring you gifts!” we would do it. We no longer have this luxury. Now we are given the ability to make our own decisions, to choose what is right or wrong, and what to believe in. As an 8 year old child, I found myself absorbing every word that everyone said to me. At my Girl Scout meetings, in classrooms, the schoolyard, my dinner table, on TV, and in the books I read. I took in every word; I anxiously waited for someone to give me something to believe in.
As I listened to my family I realized they all believed. Not in childlike beliefs but in something greater than that, in God. Although I have attended church and CCD since my birth I never grasped what I was there for. I could have attended all of the masses in the world but I never would have learned about God if it wasn’t for my family. I realized that when something went wrong my family prayed to God for guidance. When my Grandfather became ill that was the first thing my family did. As an easily influenced child I didn’t see them become upset, scream, cry, or complain. I saw them look to God for his support and trust in him. Since that moment in my life I realized, for me, I’ll always have something to believe in.
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