This I Believe

Punsak - Schertz, Texas
Entered on February 5, 2007
Age Group: Under 18
  • Podcasts

    Sign up for our free, weekly podcast of featured essays. You can download recent episodes individually, or subscribe to automatically receive each podcast. Learn more.

  • FAQ

    Frequently asked questions about the This I Believe project, educational opportunities and more...

  • Top Essays USB Drive

    This USB drive contains 100 of the top This I Believe audio broadcasts of the last ten years, plus some favorites from Edward R. Murrow's radio series of the 1950s. It's perfect for personal or classroom use! Click here to learn more.

Optimism vs. Cynicism: Does it Depend on the Person?

There’s a lot to be said about how a person lives their life. Whether it’s their daily routines or even trying new things to escape their mundane life. At this point, the everyday questions come to mind. Why do we feel? Why is it that just a smile can make our day? Why can the loss of something destroy our world?

I grew up in a family with stubborn personalities. Every one of them can hold a grudge that can last weeks, maybe even months. Everything that happens to them they take personally and their moods can shift to any extreme randomly.

During my lifetime, my family’s moved randomly here and there. My whole childhood was spent in Colorado, my preteen years were spent in New Mexico, and my teenage years were spent in Texas. I hold some type of personal attachment to each place because of the different phases I went through in life throughout them. I always manage to make one close friend from each place, but after I move, I discover that they move on. My new friends tell me that I should also move on and make new friends, but it gets harder when I find myself in groups that have known each other since kindergarten. I whirl around trying to find a group to fit in but I just get lost even more and at times do feel depressed because I either feel neglected or just hopeless because I can’t seem to make any progress with any type of relationship I establish.

Growing up with the stubbornness of my family combined with moving at random numbers of years set a cynical state in my life.

As I look back on my life though, I start to realize that we as individuals can break free from our past and can shape ourselves into someone we see fit. I’ve learned that life is constantly changing and that friends and family may come and go, but me, that’s forever (sorry if that sounds conceited). I believe in the philosophy of “self”, I believe that there is no day but today, I believe that we can’t always get what we want, but if we try sometimes, we find we get what we need. Life might give us lemons for lemonade, but what if life gave us watermelons? That’s when we slice it in fourths and have a watermelon-eating contest. It might be messy, but surely the fun will be there. For this, I truly believe.