This I Believe

Adam - Wellington, Florida
Entered on April 27, 2006
Age Group: 18 - 30

I believe that people need to appreciate everything that they have.

I am a teenager. That means when I walk around school every day, I learn that the end of the world is here. “Oh my God, my boyfriend just broke up with me!” “I have to work on Friday night!” “My mom took away my cell phone!” Regardless, I still wake up the next day, go to school, and hear another story of why our lives are so miserable.

We’re spoiled. We drive in vehicles that get less than 15 miles to the gallon, we have fast-access internet, and we have 40” high-definition TV’s to watch while a robotic vacuum cleans our homes. We’ve come to expect these modern luxuries. People are forgetting how lucky they truly are. And then when something small goes wrong, they can’t go on.

A few weeks ago, I learned that my good friend’s father has cancer. He was in the hospital for a routine procedure when the surgeon noticed something was wrong. The oncologist diagnosed colon cancer, which he also found in a lymph node. He has to start chemotherapy, in hope that the exhausting and sometimes torturous treatment will get rid of the cancer. I grew up living across the street from this family for about ten years, and they are one of the nicest groups of people you could meet. I felt absolutely terrible for them. While the average teen might be worrying about how they’re going to look on their prom night, this family is worried about fighting the cancer, and about how they’ll be able to work while their father is sick. What amazed me more than anything was what his wife said to me. Despite everything that was happening, and how terrible it seemed, she said, “When I think about it, we’re lucky, because if he didn’t go in to the hospital when he did, it might have been too late to fight the cancer.”

In today’s fast-paced society, we constantly forget the small things. We get caught up in our busy work schedules, and don’t realize how lucky we are to be here with everything that we have. Even right now, US troops are fighting, putting their lives on the line, trying to make the world we live in a better place.

I believe we need to make the best out of every situation. I believe we should always think positive, and remember, as bad as it may seem, it could always be worse.