This I Believe: Second Chances

Alena - Fort Collins, Colorado
Entered on November 5, 2008
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: forgiveness
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“This I Believe: Second Chances”

I believe in giving people a second chance. Even when they are at rock bottom;

sitting in a hotel room, drinking their life away. Every one should be given a chance to

change and turn their lives around.

In 2002, when I was about seven, a hard time had hit my family – My parents

were getting a divorce and my dad was unemployed and an alcoholic. He lived in an

apartment for about 2 years and was kicked out. He then went to live in a hotel room and

he wasted all his money on alcohol. He missed a lot of school and life events for my

brother and I. His broken promises, excuses, and abandonment were all very hurtful and

impacted my life greatly. Although he had done a lot of bad things in the past and was

emotionally hurting my family, he’s my dad and I still love him. Like my mom says,

when you think someone doesn’t deserve to be loved, that’s the time they need your love

the most.

My whole family, including, my aunts, uncles, grandmas, my brother, me, and my

mom, reached out to my dad in his time of self-destruction. We invited him to dinners,

school events, etc. Although most times he did not show, the times he did were inspiring.

He would see how happy it would make us that he was there and that he cared about us. I

think a few very important times really gave him an urge to change.

One example of an impacting event is when my dad went back to California to

visit his family in 2005. All his brothers and sisters showed him so much love. I think

their love showed him that people cared about him and wanted to have him around.

Another example is when my mom, my brother, and I visited him in his hotel

room. We showed him how much it meant to us that we were just hanging around him

and enjoying his company. It didn’t matter about what he had done in the past and we

were all willing to give him a second chance.

I think all these second chances and love gave him the will and desire to change.

He has been sober for almost two years now and lives in a townhome. He is a great father

and has made up for almost all of the lost time. He’s funny and has almost never missed a

big event or even small event for me or my brother. My brother is in college and my dad

has supported him the whole way. I am so happy to have him back in my life. He is one

of my biggest role models.

If I hadn’t given him a second chance, where would he be now? This is why I

believe in giving the ones you love a second chance.