This I Believe

Sarah - Williamstown, Massachusetts
Entered on June 27, 2007

I believe in restoration. Now, I’m atheist, so I don’t mean reincarnation. My meaning is different. For example, a lotus in a dry pond will wither and soon die. I have felt like that lotus many times. I sit there, unable to move, paralyzed. The cruel insects feast upon me, and I wait for someone to pour some water on my petals. I wait. I yearn.

Ever since Pre-K, I’ve been hated, despised, excluded, looked down on. I even remember when I was sitting on the porch of the Pre-K building in the New Orleans summer heat, looking at all the children playing together. But nobody wanted to play with me. I wondered, “What’s wrong with me?” I tried to fit in, I really did, but the kids all thought of me as weird. Everything about me was weird to them. I had no one, no friends for many years. All I had was my mom and my big brother. My father died of lymphoma when I was 2 years old. My mom had just remarried when I was four and trust me, I wasn’t too keen on him. In fact, I hated him. People at school bullied me about my differences, and I did feel alone. But finally, I got a sprinkle of water on my petals. My best friend for 7 years was met in 2nd grade. We both liked video games, we both loved animals, even though there were a few minor differences between us, we connected perfectly. When I look back, I think how fortunate it is to have someone so wonderful as a friend to me. Now I wasn’t burned to a crisp. I was just a bit droopy. Soon, I moved to another school, mostly because of the snooty girls who went to the expensive school I had gone to for 7 years. I was finally happy. This was a teeny school, only about 30 people in total. But because of that, we all were like family. We all had our own problems, but that made us fit together like a child’s’ puzzle. We learned from each other, and obtained true strength together. But the true draught was just around the corner. It was the first few days of my second year at the school. My two friends had been gone for the summer and were late to come back to school, but I was eager for them to come back on Monday. Saturday, my parents were gone for the weekend, up in Massachusetts for a party, where we had our summer home, and my brother and I had a babysitter. Then, it happened. I was playing video games on Sunday, until my brother told me we had 3 hours to evacuate. Katrina destroyed our entire 1st floor. 7 feet of water had filled our house. I was sent to a school in a little town in Massachusetts, where my new home was. I was really depressed, but I tried to be myself, pretended that this was just like an ordinary day in New Orleans. However, because I was just pretending, my spirit was like a hard-boiled egg with no shell, and the snobs at that school scarred me and chopped me into little bits. I was alone for another whole year, but a kind girl came to the school. We liked a lot of the same things, and I was happier than I had been for a long time. My mom moved me out of school shortly after I met her because, again, snobs, but we keep in close touch. And then, I met another friend, and after that, another and so on and so forth. I still have some problems, but nothing is left unresolved. I take life by the petals, and float at my own pace. I think now that I am a lotus, sprinkled with water, taking that, and turning it into a restored pond. Restoration. This is what I believe.