This I Believe

Carla - Burlington, Kentucky
Entered on January 11, 2007
Age Group: 18 - 30
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I believe I am a work in progress. Who I am today is not who I will be tomorrow. The lessons I learn today will alter the landscape of my mind, and the food and beverages I choose to consume will change the physical composition of my body. Even as I compose this essay, I am growing, becoming the woman I will be tomorrow. What type of woman will I become? That depends on the decisions I make today. I must always be vigilant and choose wisely in order to avoid creating a horrible tomorrow today.

Amazingly, it took me almost 30 years to understand this concept. Before my epiphany, I did not choose carefully. I made rash decisions that set me up for many devastating tomorrows. Struggling to survive the unexpected horrors of each new day became my only reality. I was overwhelmed and could not think rationally, so each new decision only served to make the future worse. Eventually, I was no longer able to shoulder the immense weight that my life had become. I fell to my knees, and the fragile walls of my dysfunctional existence tumbled down around me. How easy it would have been to succumb to despair and conclude that I had nothing left to give! Instead, I paused for a moment and reassessed my life up to that point. It was not hard to see the pattern of bad decisions weaving through each year. My options were suddenly painfully clear. Begin making wise decisions that very day or lie still and wait to be reclaimed by the dust from which I was formed.

Since that fateful day, my mission has been to make only decisions that will positively impact my future. I want to do things today that will make me a better person tomorrow. Regardless of the fact that I have already made a multitude of positive changes in my life during the past year, I am still a work in progress. As each new today leads me to make choices that will shape who I am tomorrow, I continue to evolve. Only when my heart throbs its final exhausted beat, will the work that is Carla finally be complete.