This I Believe

Grace - Dallas, Texas
Entered on October 14, 2007

I am of the opinion that everything happens for a reason, and if something significant happens to me, then it’s Nature’s way of balancing the world. Kind of like karma. Or for those more scientifically oriented, this belief could be explained with Newton’s third law; for every action in this world, there is an equal and opposite reaction, in the sense that Nature has accounted for the action with something to keep the world reasonably balanced. I think that this belief is how I reconcile with myself that life is not going to be perfect. It’s my defense mechanism to help me deal with life. As the saying goes, I try to take the bad with the good.

It may not seem fair that I had to lose three of my grandparents in one year, or that I didn’t get into the teen production last summer at Shakespeare in the Park, even though my monologue was really good, or that I can’t get college money for being part Native American because we don’t have my great-grandmother’s birth certificate, but I justify these things by looking at all the positive things that have happened to me; I have wonderful friends, I can ice skate, draw, and act, all fairly well. I’m lucky that I can participate in many different things that I enjoy. So when something wonderful happens and I can’t believe my good fortune, I think “This is to help make up for all the bad things that have happened to me lately.” Unfortunately, this belief can also cause more negative thoughts; for example, I remember thinking to myself when my grandmother died that somehow it happened when it did because I’d been too lucky before, or maybe to make up for my having so many skills.

But even though I believe that Nature is setting these things in motion, I also believe that these occurrences are not all pre-determined, ordained by the gods and set in stone. Humans aren’t entirely powerless against the course of their life. Coming back to Newton’s third law, humans’ actions have a resulting action, but the key to it all is that humans are the ones committing the actions. I am the cause of my actions, I have the free will to choose my actions, and therefore I have power over my fate. I do have a say in my destiny; it all comes down to the choices I make.