This I Believe

Kemp - Winterville, North Carolina
Entered on April 15, 2007
Age Group: 18 - 30
Themes: question
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It’s hard to convey the intense anguish I feel at 8 a.m., when the wailing of that air horn of an alarm clock I have startles me out of my dreams. Why does it unceasingly demand that I never get as much rest as I need? Sleeping in is a beautiful thing, which I sadly cannot practice save on a few precious Saturdays. On those treasured mornings when I have been able to linger a few extra hours, I have discovered an important truth: that it is important to relax and let life worry about itself.

At this point in my life, I find that the hideous sound of my alarm clock haunts me everywhere I go. Whenever I hear anything beeping, I cringe, because I associate it with being forced to evacuate my comfortable, safe, and warm bed. The alarm is the tyrannical ruler of my life, and it decides when I am going to wake up—against my will and better judgment. Once Saturday morning rolls around, however, there is no alarm to disturb my blissful sleep, and I can rest peacefully. It is only me, my bed, and the soothing sound of the air conditioner blowing cool air above my head. As I leisurely drift into consciousness, it is glorious to know that there is no rush to get out of bed, and no alarm nagging me to face the day ahead. And it is here, lying in bed on a Saturday morning, that I am hit, head-on, by a truckload of questions I don’t know the answers to. I wonder about what I am going to do with my life, who I am going to marry, where I am going to live, and when I will die. I wonder whether I will pass Monday’s economics test, whether I will get into business school, whether I will make a difference in my community, and how I can leave this world a better place. I contemplate where I will be in five years, and, more immediately, where I will be in five hours? These dizzying questions swirl around my mind, unalleviated by easy answers. Then, after some consideration, I come to realize that none of those questions really matter anyway. I can let my mind rest when I remember that I don’t have to, want to, or need to worry about them. I think this truth is beautiful and freeing: life is much more interesting when you don’t know what is going to happen. Worrying about the future will not make the slightest difference, because too many events, opportunities and tragedies are unpredictable. It is better to just relax and let things happen. I’ll catch up with my future soon enough, and I’ve found it’s better to arrive well-rested. Sleeping in has taught me to let tomorrow worry about itself so I can experience the full beauty of today. Next time my alarm tries to tell me otherwise, it might just find itself on the floor.