This I Believe

Bridget - Dallas, Texas
Entered on May 22, 2007

I believe you are a giver or a taker, a faucet or a sponge. Mahatma Gandhi once said, “Be the change you wish to see in the world.” Bob Dylan said, “If you don’t want to help then get out of the way.” I believe Gandhi and Dylan were faucet people. I believe that if those of us who can, don’t help those who cannot, we are all lost.

I believe that children who are given everything lose their imaginations. If I had been given a Barbie playhouse or my own TV and video games, would I have spent hours swinging from the branches of my backyard cherry tree? Would I have sat awe-struck at the window watching the dance of lightning only to scurry outside when the rain slowed to race plastic boats in my river of rain, scooping them up only seconds before they plunged into the sewer?

I believe a childhood without scraped knees, hide-n-seek, “no hands” bicycling and a dog to tell your dreams to is a poor one indeed.

I believe that life is still beautiful…

I, too, like Leonardo da Vinci, belive one should “observe in the streets at twilight… the loveliness and tenderness spread on the faces of men and women.” As long as lovers still walk hand in hand and carve their initials in trees, as long as God still brushes the sky each night with His artwork of a sunset… I believe.

I believe we determine our own futures more then we want to believe. We like to think it is our genetics, environment or whether or not we got to backpack through Europe or summer in the Hamptons. When in reality, I believe we are the curators of our own souls. We decide which triumphs or tragedies we hang in our museums, which masterpiece will be our inspiration for renewal or regress, which catastrophe will be shelved away to remind us of how stupid youth can make us. Shelved, not displayed, because I don’t want to keep looking at the vintage 70’s bucolic farm scene that still hangs in my parents’ museum.

Our beliefs are validated by our actions, so this curator business is a full-time gig. Are we one of the faucet people or one of the sponge people? The artwork of our lives is more complex than we think, filled with innuendo, surprise and subtleties. And by the way, I don’t believe “subtle” is a big word, although my high school boyfriend did.