This I Believe

andrew - santa monica, California
Entered on June 19, 2007
Age Group: Under 18

I believe in doing whatever you want whenever you want. I want to be able to do what I want and have no one tell me otherwise. Whatever I do, whether a hobby or a job, I want to be able to do it. You should never let someone tell you otherwise that you can not achieve what you really want to do. Whether you are trying out for a team to a sport you have never played or starting to play guitar at age forty—as long as you try your best and never let anyone’s opinion sway your own, then you can do anything and accomplish everything.

For instance, just recently I had surgery that limited my abilities for a while, but I am not going to let that stop me from doing what I want and achieving what I want. Lately I was told by highly qualified doctors that I would never be able to run or play any sports, but so far in my recovery I have disproved this fact and I am not going to stop there. I might want to join the armed forces in the future and I will not let this injury determine what I can do. I will have to set out on a road to prove that I am just as capable as anyone else, but I will not stop there because I will show that I am even better than average or above average.

I have the greatest respect for people who take personal challenges and medical disabilities and use them to show that they can be just as good as or better than the average. People like Dick and Rick Hoyt, a father and son team who competes in triathlons. What makes them different is that Rick has never run, but always been pushed by his father for more than 25 years—and at 65, Dick is still going strong. These same people reject pity and the sorrow shown by others towards them, and say they don’t need it—but they want to earn their respect. I believe that being average is fine if that’s what you want to be, but if you want to be the best you should strive and never be happy with yourself, if you are anything less than being perfect.