One…two. One by one each ticket to my escape fell into my hand. Six…seven. How many would it take to make me fly by everyone else? Eleven…twelve. Supposed happiness sat in my hand at this very moment. Fourteen. My blurred vision showed this so-called happiness came at a price. Sixteen. A chill ran down my spine as I began to fall.
Not a step but a full-on leap. Sixteen tiny white pills will guarantee you a whole new lifestyle. Maybe this lifestyle will have a feeding tube or maybe it will be full of counselors? But sixteen tiny white pills will guarantee you a lifestyle under a microscope. With a watchful eye at every corner, how much happiness was I really gaining when I emptied that bottle into my hand? One by one I devoured each ticket in hope that I would permanently numb my pain. But the pain was only beginning.
After my attempt of an escape failed, my life went under that microscope and I found my faith in any happiness to be nonexistent. Counselors, teachers, my parents, and friends surrounded me at all times and my so-called path to recovery became a slide to insanity. Every day was a struggle and every night I wanted to give up. I found myself hurting more now than I had ever hurt before and one single thought kept swimming around in my head, “What now?”
I believe in second chances. Not the second chances you give to a friend after they hurt you or the second chance you reluctantly hand to a boyfriend when they break your heart. I believe in the second chances that come from something greater than us. January of my senior year in high school I was trapped in the lowest point in my life. With four walls shutting me in and my mistakes piling up around me I was suffocating and I saw no light ahead. That was when my second chance arrived.
As cheesy and unreal as it may sound, it came in the mail. A little white envelope with a single piece of paper inside gave me the opportunity that I never thought I would receive. And yet it was there. In my mailbox with my name on it, laid my second chance. As I peeled off the envelope, I read the words that helped knock down the walls that trapped me and erase all the mistakes that I had around me. “I am very pleased to inform you of your acceptance to Northwest Missouri State University in the fall.”
In an instant I began to find hope in my future. I began living my life for me and even though the days were still hard and the nights were like torture I began to work toward something better. I finished the school year despite the gossip and the stares. I worked for my diploma just to prove to everyone that I wouldn’t fail and that there was more to life than that town where I grew up. Those people, with their stereotypes and every strand of gossip that they ever told, were now in my past and I couldn’t have felt better.
A second chance is not a daily luxury and in most cases it only comes to us once. Something bigger than me appeared in my mailbox that day. Although college may not seem like a gift from God, I believe that being able to start over in a town where you know not a single soul and your past does not follow you another day is a gift and not every person gets that opportunity.
That is why we must not take them for granted. A second chance can change your life forever as did mine. Although it has only been a few months, I find myself living every day to its fullest and loving every moment I spend with my friends. Today although I wish I had never had to go that low in order to make it this high, I thank God for the opportunity he gave me to start over.
I am here today because sixteen tiny white pills didn’t let me fly above the people that held onto me. I am here because I survived my own hatred and despair. I am here because I was given a second chance by something greater than me, something that brought me from sinking away to soaring above. This I believe.