This I Believe

Taylor - Remus, Michigan
Entered on September 8, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30

My Great Big Regret…

Have you ever made a comment about someone or something and as soon as it left your mouth you instantly regretted it? Well, I have.

To say just the least, I truly felt like I was an inch tall. It all happened when my cousins and I were at my great-great Grandma’s 100th birthday party. My cousins and I started judging people before I realized whom the people I was judging were.

The person I had commented about was the person I now care about and miss the most, my second cousin Jamie who is mentally challenged. She wasn’t like this since birth, she did have a few years of normalcy. A drunk driver was on the road and hit her on her bike. Then at the hospital she was pronounced brain dead but would be able to understand some simple thoughts and gestures.

I was ten years old and trying to fit in with my older cousins. They were picking on other people and I thought it was okay to do it, too. So then we were all laughing and having a great old time is when someone said that my cousin Jamie was a retard.

So the conversation went on about how mentally challenged people were thought to be just a waste of time. My littler cousin’s friend Alex and I were dared to go up to my cousin Jamie and tell her that she was a worthless retard and that no one loved her because of her condition.

Right after I had told Jamie that, I ran to my mom and began crying like crazy and was afraid to tell her what I had just done. My heart felt cold and just the thought of what I had done was making me sick to my stomach.

Looking back at what I had done, I truly regret it all. Also it makes me feel sick because all I was trying to do was fit in with my other cousins that I had just met. Now that I see that, I just wonder how they all feel knowing that they dared me to do something as wrong as that. I as a teenager really want to change how people look at the challenged. Its not always their fault, they didn’t ask to have a life like that.

All I want now is to just erase that and start all over if I could, but it’s a little late for a fresh start when the person you said it about isn’t around anymore.