Megan - Hamilton, Ohio
Entered on December 6, 2007
Age Group: 18 - 30

I believe in rock walls. Not the ones that you climb, but the ones that are handmade with love and care. In order to build a rock wall one must first find the stones to use. The stones can be all different sizes, shapes, and colors. The next step is finding a way to transport the stones from the site you’re getting them from to your home. It takes a lot of strength and effort to move those stones into your truck, unload them, then go get another load and do it all over again. Once you have your stones and the spot picked out where you want to build the wall, you must dig a foundation to lay the stones in to keep them sturdy. Now you can layer them as you please. After many hours, days, and even weeks of work, you finally have your rock wall running along your driveway, around your garden, or surrounding your pond. One must truly have a love for building rock walls because it is not an easy process.

This is a task that my dad did for 10 years. He loved to build rock walls all around our yard. These walls, however, did not only represent the hard working man that my dad was, but also the strong family that lived among them. Building a rock wall is like building a relationship with your family. You must start with a sturdy foundation of love and with each layer of your relationship build trust and respect and other elements that bring your closer to your family. Families, just like stones, are made up of individuals of different sizes, shapes, and colors, but regardless of their differences you find a way to love each and every one of them. My aunt is the complete opposite of me and quite frankly she drives me up the wall, but I accept that we have different values and I love her the same.

It takes great effort to love someone who has hurt you, but it’s a process of forgiving and forgetting that makes families stronger. After being disowned by my grandparents I forgave them when they came back around because my dad taught me that no matter how bad someone has hurt you they deserve a second chance. I’ve found that without a strong rock wall of love to fall back on in the most difficult times, all relationships would fall apart.

Now that my dad is gone, I know that he would want me to continue to build rock walls up all around me. Not to seclude myself from the world, but to show that I am strong and that I will stand up to anything that tries to come in between me and my family.