This I Believe

Alyssa - Briarcliff Manor, New York
Entered on June 1, 2007
Age Group: Under 18

Memories: Pieces of My Soul

I believe in memories. Memories are what remind me to relax, and to live. Reminiscing reminds me that life isn’t something to take for granted. Although at times I may feel miserable, my memories remind me that life really isn’t about what I can’t have, but what I make it.

I believe in memories to keep me grounded. One of the first profound memories I have is when I realized that my family wasn’t like everyone else’s. It depressed me and confused me. Yet, what impacted me more was my parents fighting. I concluded that my parents’ separation was a good thing. So I take that memory with me to remind me that my life is not any worse than someone who lives with both of their parents; it is just different.

I believe in memories to keep me sane. My memories take me back to nights where I would sit anxiously and obsess for hours about anything and everything. Now, as a young woman, I look back on those days in sadness. Yet it is a sadness that allows me to move on in life, to realize that I can’t allow my fears to take over my life.

I believe in memories to remind me of the treasure that is life. Two summers ago, my best friend and role model passed away without any warning. She taught me many life lessons that I will always remember. She taught me to be open to others and to live life in laughter and love. On that fateful day, I vowed to use my memories to remember the beautiful person that she was and to never live a day without laughter.

I believe in memories to remind me to love. Watching a teenage boy grieve over the love of his life is one of the most significant memories I will ever have. I wanted so much to understand so that I could comfort him, but there was no way I could. To truly understand love is to open up to people with the unexpected chance that they will open up to you as well. I then realized that love is something that crosses boundaries others won’t be able to touch.

I believe in memories to remind me of all the incredible people I have in my life. I reminisce about times when my friends and I would sit and giggle until the laughter actually began to hurt. My memories remind me that it is perfectly normal to just be silly once in a while. These are the moments that I live for, and my memories keep them emblazoned in my mind.

I believe in memories because they shape my character. My memories are a part of my soul, and I will forever use them to remember the people and places that have impacted my life. I will use my memories to live in optimism of the future, whatever it may hold.