This I Believe

Chelsea - New Castle, Pennsylvania
Entered on May 3, 2007
Age Group: 18 - 30
Themes: carpe diem

Life Is Too Short

When I was in fifth grade, my cousin made it to the World Special Olympics in Raleigh, North Carolina. He was twenty years old at the time and suffered from a condition called Cerebral Palsy. The whole family was going down to watch him golf for the week but I decided not to go and stay at home at a friends house. I was young at the time and going down to North Carolina to watch golf did not sound so appealing. I remember watching it on television and checking up to see how he was doing. He ended up placing third in the competition. I don’t think that he could have been happier. About a year after that he died in school from an aneurysm. I remember when my parents told me he had passed away; the first thing that went through my mind was how I wished I would have gone to watch him play.

I never really thought about the day he wouldn’t be around anymore. It was hard to think about the fact that he was never going to be at another Christmas or Thanksgiving, or the fact that we were never going to have another birthday party for him. My cousin passing away made me realize how short life really can be. I liked to think that people would be around forever, but unfortunately that was not the way things happen.

Knowing that my cousin was not going to be able to do all the things he could have if he was still alive taught me a lot. It made me think about my life and the things that I want to accomplish. There are a lot of things I would like to do in my life and I think that if I want to do them bad enough I should. I don’t want to live my life going by the rules, I want to do fun things, even some things I know I shouldn’t do. I don’t want to look back later on and wish I would have done something that I didn’t do.

I learned that I should never take anything for granted, especially my friends and family. It got me to think about all of the good things that I have in my life. I know that one day my friends and family are going to be gone and I don’t want to have anything in my life that I regret with them. I don’t want to be able to remember fights or any bad times with them, I want to remember all the good things with the people I love and care about. This made me realize that I should not bring drama into my life. I am not a bitter person; I believe that life is too short to be anything but happy.