This I Believe

Ryan - Knoxville, Tennessee
Entered on December 5, 2006
Age Group: 18 - 30
Themes: carpe diem
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It takes a while to think of what you actually believe in. There are many things that I believe in more than anything, and I will stand by as my morals. My most important belief is the belief in friends. A friend can be defined as a person who gives assistance and you can trust. I have had some of the greatest times with them, and they have helped me out with so many things. I can honestly say I could not ask for any different people to have as friends, as some of my best memories have been with them. I have made some of the worst choices and some of the best choices with these friends.

Another belief of mine is living life to the absolute fullest. No body knows when they will die. I don’t believe in wasting time stressing over something when you could go out and do the things you always wanted to do. I don’t want to end my life with a list of things I still want to do. I want to be able to say, “I’ve don’t that”, to everything in my interest. One of my favorite activities that I can defiantly cross off my list is cliff jumping. Just about every hot day my friends and I would pile into our cars and head over to “the bluffs”. Now, at “the bluffs” there are four different jumps possible. The first two cliffs, 15 and 30 feet, are mostly for beginners. When relating to them to my life they are obstacles that I leaped over when I was younger. When I was in middle school I was just like everyone else, trying to decide who I am. It was the normal battles, making friends, fitting in, and not making a complete a fool of myself while doing it. I can relate this to the smallest jump at “The Bluffs”. Looking back even though these were a big deal at the time, it really doesn’t matter now. While it may have been hard to jump off of this small cliff when I was younger, much like trying to fit in, seems like such a small obstacle now.

The next highest jump is what I like to think of as the mid-way point. It’s like when I was going through high-school, continuing some of the obstacles of middle school, yet with more pressure. The appearance of drugs and alcohol came into my life early in high school and help me decide who I want to be in life. I pushed the limits at times, and without a doubt paid the price for it. I constantly wanted to try new things, even if they were against most adult’s morals. I have always felt that just because someone else has certain morals, doesn’t necessarily make them correct. I believe that I should be the one to try things and figure out what my morals should be. I would compare my journey to figuring out what is “morally” correct.

Risk taking is another one of my beliefs. Looking back, I don’t have many memories where risk wasn’t a factor. One of the biggest risks was the next two cliffs, 60 and 65 feet. The 60 foot cliff is my favorite because it is a straight drop to the water, the only way you can get hurt is if you land wrong. The 65 foot jump is a little bit trickier. In order to not kill yourself you must leap over a small tree and clear a couple feet of rocks to get to the water. On this jump you can not even see the water when you summit yourself over the obstacles. I believe that this relates to who I am today. I moved away from home, wanting to start over. In a way, I leaped without looking, without knowing where I would land in the water. I believed that the happiness I had back in Knoxville would carry on to Murfreesboro, in which it did. I have always felt that a persons best values are their beliefs. I try to live by my beliefs, turning myself into who I have set myself out to be, not follow the morals and beliefs of others. I believe in myself, and that is my number one value.