This I Believe

Katherine - Marietta, Georgia
Entered on December 17, 2007
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: death, setbacks
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I believe in always moving forward.

Two years ago my younger brother passed away. As one can imagine this loss was devastating for my family, but we all had our ways of coping. My father no longer felt the need to speak to us, while my mother spent her nights crying in my brother’s old room. My younger sister dealt with everything by reverting to the maturity level of a five year old.

I isolated myself while spiraling into a state of self destruction. I became an emotionless creature trapped in a human body. I didn’t care about anything. I never completed my school work or studied, so my grades plummeted. Friendship seemed like a waste of time, and the more my friends tried to reach out to me, the more I withdrew. We slowly drifted apart to the point that we no longer acknowledged one another’s presence. In midst of this all, my bedroom became my sanctuary, for it was the only place where I could somewhat feel at peace. I spent my time sitting on the floor, blankly staring at the pictures of my family on my wall. All I could think about was how happy we once were.

Eventually I realized there was little purpose in conducting my life in this manner. I saw how demented my family had become, and how much we needed one another. I found the only solution to this mess was to reconstruct my life. I made an effort to contact my old friends, and once again focused on my studies. I organized family meals so we could get used to looking at each others faces once more. The biggest step for me was putting the pictures of my family away in my attic.

My way of grieving showed me that while its ok to feel upset, there’s no need to halt everything while you cope with difficult experiences. The need to continue moving forward is so crucial, because the things you lose while dwelling on the past are irreplaceable. I lost months of time that I should have spent with my friends and family and to this day I would give anything to have that time back. Also, when I decided to move forward with my life, I discovered new interests which helped me complete the grieving process.

As I am faced today with difficult experiences, I always make sure to keep moving forward with my life. Whether I fail a test or don’t make the high school team, I know that it is not the end of the world. I’ve learned that there will always be rough times in my life, but they won’t seem so bad if I keep moving forward.