Stay on the Bright Side

Jimmy - Tacoma, Washington
Entered on January 19, 2008
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: hope, setbacks
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Have you ever heard the phrase, “ Hey, look on the bright side,” or “ Keep your head held high,” or my personal favorite, “ Things could be worse.” Have you ever noticed that these phrases seem to spout from those who have not been through anything similar to the trials befalling you. I have heard these things and am here to tell you , from the heart of someone who has been through it, that you should stay optimistic because things could always be worse.

I have always been a mildly optimistic person, when someone was down, I would try to pick them up without drawing to much attention to their situation. When my friend’s father had a stroke I was one of the first to know about it. I did my best to keep it quiet and an after school club I was in made cards for her and her family. When she got back to school I sincerely offered her some of the phrases that I have mentioned above. To my surprise my words seemed to bounce right off of her. “What was the matter,” I thought, “ I said that things could always be worse.” I just didn’t understand.

About a month ago my dad was admitted to the hospital due to medication problems. That week was without a doubt, the worst week of my life. I was distraught, due in small part that I had to take up a lot of slack, and in large part that my dad was the only person in my family that I can relate to. When my dad came home, I was ecstatic I finally had my dad back.

Four days later when my dad was readmitted a different hospital due to the same thing, I was beyond distraught. I was at the point where I would use up all of my energy just to maintain the appearance of normalcy at school. I would then pass out on the couch and ponder why people seemed to think that things could always be worse. I was going through a time that no one should ever go through, let alone a freshman in his first weeks of high school, and they thought things could be worse!

It has been two weeks since my dad returned from the hospital the second time and he seems to have made a complete recovery. I now have a greater optimistic attitude and when I see someone sad I try to be nice and let them sweat out whatever fever they are having, because although they don’t realize it, things really could be worse.