This I Believe

Caroline - Marietta, Georgia
Entered on December 13, 2006
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: creativity
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I believe in origami. I believe in the power of the little paper creatures. I believe in the folds that build origami.

I started origami because of the way the paper looked after the folding was done. It surprised me that something so flat could change into something so extraordinary and it fed my hunger to finish the crane I had started. Soon, I began origami with only diagram to guide me, and the unknown waiting ahead.

I started folding but creases started to grow. I attempted to smooth out the creases. Minutes pass as I try to reach perfection. The creases wasted hours of my life. I yearned for perfection as creases blocked the way. However, the creases were not the main problem I should have worried about. The main problem was learning the correct folds to come out with the desired product than I expected to achieve. In frustration, I quit folding the paper. Although I could never truly reach “perfection”, I should not quit. The need to finish the crane overcame my want to quit.

When I had finished my first crane in the instructions seemed neater and more prim. After a million squares of paper, my crane became closer to the picture . Through practice, I came closer to perfection . By practice I found that no matter where I went, practice was the key to helping me improve. I held to that belief as I started to learn more complex creatures.

Although perfection could never be reached, I could get close and I accepted that. I choose to construct the crane because it was said to bring luck to the maker. Origami allowed me to express myself by flying away with the cranes I created. The freedom to make mistakes without great consequences opened the cage created through the fright of failure. Origami was the path of expression through silence.

Origami is said to bring luck but what is actually received is a better understanding of life, including the fact that failure is a part of life. It is a teaching tool that has guided me through the mistakes of school and swimming.