Choices and Surroundings

Sam - Nyack, New York
Entered on November 25, 2008
Age Group: Under 18

Throughout my life, there has been one very concrete thing that I believe in; that you create your future by making choices and that those choices are ALWAYS affected by surroundings, circumstances, or time. The living environment around you creates the always present “what-if” questions of life. What if I don’t get into college? What if we go to war? What if my family breaks apart? What happens to me? All these questions are generated through what is going on around you, but the answers to these questions are produced by you how you respond to them and assimilate with the changes they create. Everything can be changed in a split second, and miniscule things can change them: the CRACK! of a bullet, the cry of a baby, the closing of a door, or the opening of a new one. There are always a lot of opportunities in life; you just need to know when to seize them. While your environment may influence your life, the choices you make helps you define who you are.

Circumstances, like surroundings, can be another driving force that powers your life. Should you steal because you need it? Should you ask for help if you are down? Should you turn your friend in for a minor crime? Choices will always bog you down; but not just in your life, but in your mind as well. You need to drive through the fog on a slippery road to make your own way and to do what you want with your life. Circumstances create the questions that have a billion parts to it; if I buy this, then will I have money for this gift, and will that gift even be worth it? The only difference between surroundings and circumstances are that you can change your surroundings but not control them, whereas you can’t change the circumstances.

When you think about it, there are few easy choices. I have had one important choice in my life so far that I consider monumental. About a year ago, I became injured with spondlylothesis, a stress fracture, in my L5 vertebrae. This is very unusual in a 13 year old, and it was a major problem that could have led me to make the wrong choice. After many months of physical therapy and other rehabilitating procedures, the doctor gave me 3 choices: to undergo surgery, to stop playing sports all together, or to play through the pain. I chose to keep playing, and I hope that this choice will be beneficial to me. I have been able to play about a season and a half with my back, and it is doing pretty well now.

The world is full of choices, just waiting to be made. All you have to do is make the right one. How do you do that? My mom always says to think of how this choice will affect me in 10 minutes, 10 months, and 10 years. Will you be affected if you got in an argument with a friend in 10 minutes; yes. 10 months; you probably would have gotten over it by now. 10 years; you won’t even remember the argument and still be friends. Everyday, things happen that may affect you in the short term, or the long term and you have to be prepared to deal with these problems. Most of the time, you deal with them by making choices. And, no matter what you chose though, it is YOUR choice and it takes you one step closer to defining yourself. Decisions are always affected by surroundings, circumstances, and time, yet you still need to make these decisions, and continue with your life. And this is what I believe.