This I Believe

Daniel - Berwyn, Pennsylvania
Entered on February 26, 2007
Age Group: Under 18

I believe that it is the smallest displays of kindness and affection that make the most difference and which forever change someone’s life.

In our world it seems that many overlook their actions and the needs of others. People underestimate the fact that a simple smile can brighten even the worst of days. They forget to understand that it is not the most expensive or elaborate gift which people treasure most, but the one that has meaning from the heart. It is a simple joke in times of panic, an extra effort in times of need, or a small loving gesture in times sadness: the tiniest things that forever change someone’s life.

Growing up, I was not the person I am today. I was fat, lazy, ugly, and disgusting. Let me reiterate, on the outside I looked like every other boy, but on the inside I was a mess. I was just finishing my first year of high school and I was selfish, insecure, I used people, lied, stole…did just about anything to get my way.

I was spiraling out of control, and fast. I felt in many ways, that I had no possible way of fixing my problems. No Hope.

It was then when I happened upon a few kids that were different. No they weren’t solving all my problems and explaining the mysteries of the universe, but they were being friendly, giving me rides, and even laughing at my corny jokes. Every little thing they did differently began to distinctly stand out. After we would hang out, it was not so much what we had done that I remembered, but what they had done for me. And all these instances began add up in my head as I slowly began to realize that these kids were unique.

Because of their little gestures of kindness and acceptance, I was able to see my errors and learn from them. I found faith in Christianity and ended the hectic, out of control spin and instead began life on a new path.

Yet this magnificent change, the greatest decision of my life, did not come from one amazing realization, one gigantic blossom of understand. Instead it was cultivated through a bundle of tiny, little actions that put a smile on my face, brightened my day, and allowed me to grow.