This I Believe

Amanda - Westlake, Ohio
Entered on September 6, 2007
Age Group: 18 - 30
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Importance of Solitude

I believe that being in solitude helps you realizes what is most important to you, and helps you learn how to connect with those around you.

During my senior year I had the opportunity to go on a ten day trip to Moab Utah with my honors ecology class. The trip was going to be expensive and there would only be spots for twenty two of my classmates. Since it was a first come first serve deal I had to make my decision about the trip quickly. I was skeptical about the trip at first because of the fact that we would be living out in the wilderness with nothing around us, no place to shower, or even a toilet with running water. But kids from previous years said the trip had changed their lives and they will never forget the fun they had.

I will never regret deciding to take that class trip to Utah. While I was there I didn’t care about anything else. No one cared about what time it was or what was on television. We weren’t allowed to have our cell phones with us so we weren’t distracted by the people back home, and we learned to entertain ourselves by finding new things to do.

On the second night of the trip we were at Arches National Park where we took the long hike up to see the famous Delicate Arch. This night ended up being the most important night of the entire trip. Here is where we truly all connected to each other as we had to scramble up the dangerous edge of the arch trusting in our leaders and other peers for protection and support. After we climbed up under the arch our teacher told us we were going to have our solos, where we would sit by ourselves and journal about how we felt and everything that was going on around us. During this solo one of my closest friends and I reconnected our friendship. We had been fighting for months over something we both couldn’t even remember, but being out in the middle of nowhere and being able to think about anything at all made us realizes how stupid little fights can be and how judging people just because they don’t come from the same group of is stupid.

After our solo’s we all met back under the arch and laid down each of us having to touch another so we were all connected, and my teacher read a passage from Desert Solitaire by Edward Abby about how we were all connected to the earth and each other. “As we lay here, we’re all connected with each other, connected to this arch, which is connected to this earth, which, is connected to this universe, emblazon this image into your heart.” After that night we were already so closely bonded as a group that none of us wanted to go back home.