This I Believe

Jennifer - Lake Osewgo, Oregon
Entered on January 6, 2008
Age Group: Under 18

Think how many times your parents or teachers told you to take responsibility for your actions? And since we are humans, naturally we want to blame someone for our actions instead of ourselves. Homework late, why not blame the teacher or room dirty, blame your siblings; it is so much easier to blame someone else. Though if you don’t take responsibility for your actions bad things can happen, to yourself and even the people around you.

I believe that if you don’t take responsibility for your actions then you can be affected by it.

The story I am going to tell you is not about me, but about someone close to me I am going to use a different name to protect the person. The person who this story involves is named Zach and he was in 8th grade when I realize how not taking responsibility for your actions can affect you and the people around you.

When Zach was in 5th grade he started not turning in homework, but he would say he did it. This continued on through 6th, 7th and 8th grade. Before 8th grade Zach began to see a counselor. From mid-fifth grade through eighth grade, Zach would get very angry and very fast to the point of sometimes hurting people around him. Zach also experienced headaches, doctors checked for bipolar disorder, or if there was anything causing the headaches. Nothing was found out of the ordinary and he was put on meds to prevent headaches and saw a doctor for bio feedback to help ease his headaches and anxieties. Now, Zach is very smart, but because he was not doing homework, or doing it but not turning them in, he would get F’s and D’s, though when he did projects it would be over the top. The projects became more meaningful and tangible to him than filling in assignments. Zach starting acting strange because before 5th grade he used to be so much fun, fun loving and always ready to help you.

By May when he was in 8th grade he was still not doing well, it just got worse. When Zach gets migraines, he would take medicine such as Tylenol. Then one day Zach was home sick throwing-up and feeling miserable. Finally he called to ask his mom, who was at the store, when she would be home. When home she checked on her son and called the doctor worried he might be dehydrated. When they got in to the clinic Zach broke down crying saying that he had taken 11 pills the night before. Zach’s mom went up to the front desk as his mom checked them in to the clinic Zach sat down in the waiting area. When his mom came back to sit and wait with him, he quietly said that he had also taken 11 pills that morning as well. His mom rushed back up to the front desk and told the person there that it was an emergency and they needed to see someone fast. When they got him to the doctor and told them what happened the doctor said that they should get him to the hospital and fast because the pills could affect his liver. Medicine is supposed to help you, but too much can damage your liver to the point where it starts shutting down. They rushed him to the hospital, while in the hospital they hooked him up to tubes and IV’s that would help protect his liver. Luckily he survived but for two weeks he had to go to Emmanuel where they have a unit for kids with mental and emotional behavior problems. Later Zach shared that he took all the medicine because he was so depressed that he did not know what he was doing. He realized he was behind on homework again. He was just thinking that Tylenol helps with headaches maybe it would get rid of all the late homework he had let pile up.

Unfortunately he still does not take full responsibility for his actions; he did not learn his lesson. Because of his irresponsibility, he can not take his own medicine his mom or dad or sister has to get it for him. He is getting better, but he still has a way to go. Hopefully nothing real bad happens this time, but I do want something to get done because then maybe he will learn his lesson. I am now always watching myself to make sure I don’t blame someone else for my actions, because even though it is hard taking responsibility for your actions because it may be embarrassing it does have its awards and you can stay away from one nasty mess.