This I Believe

Sarah - Buffalo Grove, Illinois
Entered on May 3, 2006
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: carpe diem

When looking back on my life, I generally see a safe, clean-cut character. I am a good student who is often known as the “maternal one” of my group. Oftentimes I will be the one to go inside for an extra jacket if it’s cold, or the one to walk the extra way to be able to cross at a crosswalk, even if it’s farther from our destination. I’m also always the one to administer helpful reminders when needed, such as to not ride your bike blindfolded down the street or to always wear sunscreen even if you want to tan. So, let’s face it. I don’t take risks.

Recently I heard the quote “no day but today” from the movie musical Rent. Just hearing it got me thinking about how I live my life. I kept flashing back to all the relatively stupid or random things my friends and I have done in the past: the things I often back out of in fear of physical harm or punishment from my parents, like tumbling head-over-heels down the biggest hill in town or late-night expeditions to friends’ houses.

I believe that these stupid, random things that happen are part of what makes life worth living. There will be times when there are negative repercussions because of these risks, but they will be some of the best stories to tell afterward. Staying cooped-up inside all my life, though it will keep me safe from any potential harm, won’t ever give me the same types of experiences. I often envy my friends for their openness to small risks. As much as I want to, there is always a part of me saying otherwise, a mix of want and fear. Nonetheless, I believe that I should live each day like I mean it. I want to take the little risks and experience the rushes that come with them.

I believe in living my life full out, a difficult task for me. I don’t exactly plan on jumping off the Sears Tower without a parachute anytime soon, but I have been trying to do more as of recently, trying to “live a little,” as some would say. Especially with me being amidst my high school years, I feel it’s important to have fun and take the extra risk every once in awhile.

These days are the days I will remember years from now. Why waste them? I believe that I should try something new, take the risk, and enjoy the experience. I refuse to sit inside and watch the rain fall; I will go out and dance in it instead. My today can only be what I decide to make of it, so I believe in living it like there is no tomorrow.