This I Believe

Katie - Dallas, Texas
Entered on December 13, 2007
Age Group: 18 - 30
Themes: integrity

I believe in integrity. In the doing the right the thing even when no one is looking. I believe to be able to trust someone with your whole heart is a gift from God.

When I was in the ninth grade I had to make a decision over telling the truth in order to protect someone or telling a lie. It was during our first exams as high school students that someone decided to steal our geography final. Our teacher, Ms. Pung discovered the final had been stolen and was questioning students if they knew who had done it. That week Ms. Pung asked me to stay after class to ask me if I knew anything about the missing final. While she was asking me about the final I began to have a mini panic attack, because I had learned that somehow my cousin and two of his friends managed to steal the final. My cousin and I are both the same age and have grown up together all our lives. Before Ms. Pung had called me in earlier that day, my cousin told me he and two of his friends stole the final, and made me promise not to tell. That would have been fine if the day before Ms. Pung hadn’t told our class if anyone who is withholding information doesn’t step forward they will receive some form as punishment as well. So back to my mini panic attack in front of Ms. Pung, of what should I do, turn in my cousin and hope he doesn’t find out it was me, or hope that Ms. Pung wont be able to tell I am lying to protect my cousin. I ended up lying to Ms. Pung that day because my cousin put his trust in me not to tell anyone about the stolen final. To me it was more important to keep that trust in my family than anything else. My cousin and one of his friends eventually were turned in for stealing the exam, and received AEP which is pretty much school in the basement by yourself for six weeks. His other friend did not get in trouble even though she was known for being a cheater. But last year she was caught cheating and was expelled from Rice University. As one of my favorite singers would say, “What goes around comes back around”

I do understand that I lied to an authority figure, but I had already established a bond of honesty and trust with my cousin that I was going to keep. Being able to trust someone without a doubt in your head brings a sense of relief.

I believe in trust and loyalty, without them there would be no true best friends in the world.