This I Believe

Danielle - Saint Louis, Missouri
Entered on December 10, 2007
Age Group: Under 18

Money Doesn’t Buy Everything

I believe that money can buy anything in the world except for one thing- happiness. There is not one store anywhere in the universe that sells happiness, it all starts in one’s heart.

Throughout my sixteen years of life, I have encountered two main types of people in the world, those who have all the money possible and those who have close to nothing. In the experiences that I have come across, I have witnessed people who are wealthy, namely big time celebrity actors and musicians, but they never seem to truly be happy and content. They feel like the only true way to achieve happiness is to keep buying things and that one day, when they do have everything, their lives will be fulfilled. This is a big contrast to those who are not financially stable. Where I live, there are places around the city where people dwell in torn up houses with boarded up windows and padlocks on the doors so these inhabitants can prevent from being robbed. Yet, these are the people who really seem to be the happiest. These are the people who don’t take for granted the things that they have. These are the people who are happy for what they have, especially for their family. Even though they do live in rough neighborhoods, they are the ones who are outside at nine in the morning sitting in front of bonfires trying to keep warm. However, by being with their family at these cold hours, they are enjoying every second of their bonding time.

I remember a few years ago when I was in seventh grade and iPods were starting to become the newest trend. Everybody had one- my friends, my cousins, and even some of my teachers, everyone except for me. Needless to say, I thought that having an iPod was the most amazing invention and I begged and begged my parents to buy me one. Each time the answer was the same, “No, what’s the point of having an iPod? You have a CD player, isn’t that enough?” I thought that having an iPod would make me the happiest girl in the world. Finally, on my fourteenth birthday, my dad gave into my pleas and bought me an iPod. Although I was ecstatic that I had an iPod at first, a few weeks later, a new version came out. I soon realized that the iPod I had then was not enough, I wanted the newest, latest and greatest iPod. Although I never did get the newest iPod, I realized that if I were to get it, a more improved iPod would be out in a few weeks and I would just want that one as well.

Material items cannot make a person truly happy. They just make people want more and more and are not thankful for what they do have. The only sure way to achieve the level of happiness is to be grateful for what you have, not for what others have.