This I Believe

Zak - Singer Island, Florida
Entered on July 10, 2007
Age Group: 18 - 30
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I believe that everything happens for a reason. I attended public school for sixth grade. The transfer into a public school from a private academy was like going into a different world. I put all my attention into school work and excelled in all of my classes.

The only breaks I would get from school were vacations to Singer Island and Jupiter with my dad. Those were the best years of my life.

The first day of eighth grade, my friends offered me a ride home from school. The mother of one of the girls drove us all into a tree at 72 m.p.h. that day. The day that changed my life is one I can not remember, yet a day that I will never forget.

After a week, I attended an out-patient rehabilitation program. The homework consisted of a daily journal, a series of crossword puzzles, and a subject of study. The subject of study took 3 or 4 hours to complete.

It was the dedication to my homework in my Elementary and Middle school that made me not think about taking a day off. I worked from 6 to 9 hours everyday after treatment on homework, and not complain.

In high school, I didn’t know how to handle all of the attention so I picked the crowd that was less intimidating; the bad crowd.

Drinking helped numb the pain of losing my best friends. It seemed to be the only way out. Alcohol is only the start for me because I drank to escape reality.

Eventually, I got my first D.U.I. This is shocking to everyone but me. I felt like I got out of trouble easily because a friend bailed me out. After a period of going further down a seemingly endless cave, failing college courses, failing a drug test from my probation officer, losing friends, and burning my dad over and over again there seemed to be no hope for me.

Finally, I got a second D.U.I. There was no way of not realizing how bad I had gotten. I found myself, at last, looking towards the roof of the jail cell begging for strength and guidance from God.

After I had gotten out of containment, I had no where to go. The only option for me was to go to a Christian work camp. I lived with other people who had no where to go, had no families, and were bound by their addictions. There were rusted weights under a blue tarp tent, an old and semi-broken basketball hoop and 6 people to a dorm sized room. For the first time in my life, I was truly grateful for everything I had. I found reasons to live a better life. I was saved.

I still had to go to a drug rehabilitation center for court obligations. This institution has taught me how to start my new life. Once I heard this will save me, I dove head first into the Big Blue Book doing everything anyone suggested.. It was very extensive. It took all of my time, energy, and concentration.

I reflected on all of my new feelings, watching the sunset, and write poetry. I felt like this was a solution to all of my problems. I finished reading poems I had written, then looked up. I saw a room filled with bright eyes and opened mouths. This inspired me to go back to school.

After I completed the in-patient treatment center, I was preparing to go to the half-way house for sober support. It’s located on Singer Island, where I spent the best years of my life.

Then I went to look for a job. I walked around all of Singer Island and only one place that seemed more than eager to give me a position, was the place where my dad and I had stayed for vacation and had so many great memories; Palm Beach Shores Resort.

My manager has shared with me his experience with drug and alcohol abuse. This made me feel like I am not alone. He gave me a great schedule; Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.

Now that I have a steady job, I decided to enroll in a summer class at PBCC. The only English class that was available was perfect because I am always staying busy.

The Professor seems to have the same insight on writing as I had recently discovered. I can now further my writing abilities with the same creativity as I had been.

I have had an urge to make a difference in peoples’ lives by my words. He will help me explore how to write my feelings to tell people my experience in life, and perhaps give them the hope they have not yet found.