This I Believe

C - Norfolk, Massachusetts
Entered on January 25, 2008
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: hope

The Forgotten Essential

I believe that hope is just as essential to life as food or water or air. If any of these elements are lost, so is the life that has lost their possession.

For the last couple of years I’ve been on a roller coaster. Which peaked, or hit bottom, depending on how you look at it, last winter. I was seriously thinking about killing myself. To simply put it like that, to those who have not actually gone through it, does not even begin to do it justice. It’s not like I just suddenly woke up one morning and didn’t want to live any more, and it wasn’t for any one standout reason I could figure out. Although I could have listed many attributing factors. I was stuck in this cycle of horrible negative thoughts, that I won’t go into detail about. I will say, it’s a place I don’t want to go back to and hope not to return to. It is a place of hopelessness. And I believe that a life without hope is worse than death. Because without hope for something better, all a person has to look forward to is the relief of death. The whole thing isn’t very a comforting feeling. It’s even worse when it’s your own. I learned first hand that you cannot even begin to change this feeling until you truly want to. It doesn’t matter how much anyone else wants it for you. You have to want it for yourself and be ready, and willing to change. Which is so much more difficult than it sounds.

Obviously the thoughts that I had, I did not act upon. Having not done this gave me the opportunity to heal and come through it. Looking back and reflecting on what I have gone through, I have discovered all the factors that once formed my list had one linking thread that I was blind to at the time. I had lost any sense of hope.

I realized after coming through it, the thing above all that was necessary for me to get up and keep going every day, was hope. And when you are looking for it, hope can be found in the simplest things. Like feeling the warmth of the sun on your face, or the idea that you’ve been searching for coming to you at just the right time. It all depends on how you look at everything.

I’m not going to lie. I still have my battles on occasion. But they are barely comparable to when everything was at it’s worst. Because I know there is one huge difference now. I have hope. And whenever those negative thoughts start to creep in that’s what I try to refocus on. Having the ability to do this, has kept me away from that place where no one should ever have to go. It is thanks to hope that I am here today and continue to be. Hope is vital to life. This I believe.