This I Believe

leila - s.w. ranches, Florida
Entered on March 14, 2007

This I believe:

I had just turned fifteen. I was living the “life” going to the beach and having a good time. Until one night; we call it the family intervention. Basically, it was the night my whole family had found out I that I wasn’t making the smartest choices. My parents realized that I was basically living two lives. The walls I built made up of lies that stood strongly between us had fallen and crumbled down to the floor. Mixed emotions lay so heavily in the room. It was like thick black smoke and no one could see past it.

My brother had just come home from a therapeutic boarding school because he also did not make such wise decisions. He basically was the one who mediated the whole thing and tried to help everyone cool down. The decision made by all of us was for me to go to a wilderness program in North Carolina.

S.U.W.S of the Carolinas was the name of it, School of Urban Wilderness Survival. It was the last place I would call home but the first place I would call my sanctuary. I expected it to be easy-going. I wish I could explain to you how I felt the first night, but I can’t. I was simply speechless.

I spent my first three days at base getting equipment, getting equipment, and learning safety tips. By my fourth day I was hiking out to the field, which meant the woods. When I first got there the group had circled around for an introduction circle. Everyone had gone around saying their name and how long they had been there, and that is when it hit me. I heard people say 79 days 95 days 84 days, and that was when I realized that I was going to be their for a long time. For about a week I had a bad case of the summertime blues. The second week I was like a bull kept in a cage. I was so angry that I was in the middle of nowhere hiking ten hours a day, eating peanut butter, and trying to make a fire. The third week I could care less, I wasn’t involved with the group at all I would eat sleep and hike. By the fourth week I was so fed up I had to get out of there fast. So I started to complete all my skills, take role as an effective leader, and follow through with therapy.

By the fifth week I had officially reached every Suwslings goal! Grad Group. After two months of struggling in the wilderness, I had come to a point where it was time for me to leave my sanctuary. I had come to realize that by spending all this time in the hands of God, I was able to change for the better. That is why I believe nature heals.