This I Believe

Natalie - Clearwater, Florida
Entered on May 3, 2007
Age Group: 18 - 30


I was thirteen years old as my parents loaded a Uhaul truck in my hometown of Broad Ripple, Indianapolis. I had no idea what it would be like moving to Florida. All I knew was Florida had the beach, and Disney World. A fantasy land of a life long vacation in Florida swirled in my mind. I never realized that I would no longer be attending school with my life long friends at Christ the King. My hometown was a humble place where neighbors borrowed lawn mowers from each other and meant for breakfast on Sundays.

After arriving in Florida July 4, 1994, I took up chasing lizards in the back yard. I had no friends of course and it was going to be a long summer before school began. My family received an unexpected visit from my brother at our new home. We had not seen him in years. He had become a child of the road. He had followed his true calling music, nature and good times. He was happy, that I know for sure. My brother died a week later in a fatal car accident. He was riding down a curvy road with his dog, his best friend and two girls. Everyone in the car was killed by an oncoming garbage truck which had crossed lanes.

In the grips of grief I was numb, and I stayed that way for a long time. I had been close to my brother, but never as close as I had wanted to be. After all I was still the little sister. As the impact of the move had just began to hit me my own flesh and blood had been ripped of the face of the earth. I wanted to hate someone so I hated God, for a long time.

I lived this way for awhile; I’m not sure for how long. Until one day I remembered something my bother had said in our living room during his last visit to Florida. Jason had said, “I see God in the trees, I hear his voice in music and I feel his love when a child laughs. “

This I believe, each day is a gift, and the little things do not matter in the grand scheme of things. Happiness is the ultimate goal in life; once happiness is achieved life has been lived to its fullest capacity.