One Chance

Marcel - Murray, Utah
Entered on January 6, 2008
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: carpe diem

I believe in the value of life. There is only one chance at life, and I believe that that solitary chance should be used to follow ones dreams and live life to its fullest potential.

I am 15 years old and I live in a family that has fixated themselves on the ideal of living life to the fullest. We go boating, snowmobiling, camping, hiking, hunting, fishing, and a wide variety of other activities that I am sure end in –ing. We are always active and always moving; seeing what we want to see and experiencing what we want to experience. We try our hardest to get as much out of life as we can.

I recall a conversation between my uncle Danny and one of his friends during a boating trip; “This is a lot of fun.” said my uncle’s friend. “I’ve always wanted to get a boat, but they are so time consuming and way too much work.” My uncle replied sarcastically, “Yeah, I guess you can always wait until your next life.”

I’m always reminded of this brief conversation when I think about the idea of a “life philosophy”. Subsequently, my uncle’s friend bought a boat three weeks after that trip and snowmobiles three months after that. My family has taught me to follow my dreams and aspirations in the hope that I too will be able to live my life to the fullest. I’ve learned that it’s always better to do what you love and reach for your dreams.

I like to think that my family taking me on all of these activities and telling me to follow my dreams hasn’t shaped my own personal life philosophy as much as the experiences that I have gained because of the activities. I believe that those who surround me have a great influence on my personality and ideals, but that my own personal experiences have had, and will continue to have, an even greater influence on my forming of the philosophy by which I live my life.

Somewhere between the campfires, snowy landscapes, and beach towels, I have found something much more valuable than s’mores, great pictures, and an occasional tan. I have found that reaching for my dreams and experiencing as much as I can has helped me in many ways. It has brought me closer to my family, made me a more well-rounded individual, and has taught me to do all I can with my one chance at life.

The realization brought on by my “exposure” to the world around me has shaped the way I live my life. I will continue to grow and shape my personal philosophy as I continue to reach for my dreams. I have learned how precious life is and how important it is to live it to the fullest. Wayne Gretsky once said, “You miss one hundred percent of the shots you never take.” I will never stop taking shots.