The Little Things

Christina - San Antonio, Texas
Entered on January 28, 2009
Age Group: Under 18
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There are too many people in this world that get caught up in their lives, who never even get the chance to slow things down and go at a pace that allows them to appreciate the things that really matter to them in life. I believe that the only things that truly matter in life are our relationships with the people around us.

I came to see this last summer. After an extremely stressful year in school – a year I can honestly say I cried because of school-related stress at least a few times a month – summer vacation was long overdue. Without the pressures put on me by school, I was finally able to see how enjoyable life could be without all the added stress. One night towards the end of summer, I was lying outside with my three sisters looking at the stars. With my junior year – the most difficult and exhausting year of high school – looming ahead of me, I had no choice but to be thankful for every moment of freedom I had left. I decided then that stress wasn’t something put on me by others, but something I chose myself in an attempt to meet everyone else’s expectations. This was something I could control. This was something I could put aside in order to truly be happy, just as I was at that moment lying between people who matter the most to me.

I believe that nothing in the world can make you happier than being around people you love. Nothing – not even money, beauty, strength, or intelligence – can match the importance of our relationships with others. This can be difficult to remember when others are constantly telling us that it’s important to make good grades or make a lot of money, but when it comes down to it, none of these things really matter at all. Our time on earth is limited, but so is everyone else’s. Someone you love may not be here tomorrow so you must appreciate their life and allow them to be a part of yours. I find it important to take in every little thing that you love about someone – their smile, their hugs, their smell, or even their mere presence. I believe everyone should stop and show their gratitude for the ones they love. Loving someone is so simple, yet the effect this love can have on you is so profound.

The dreaded junior year has been tough so and I do get stressed every so often. However, now I am able to catch myself, stop, and slow things down. I find comfort in my friends and family, which has made my year a lot easier so far. With their help, I find myself more easily content with life. In regards to relationships, the poet Kahlil Gibran said, “For in the dew of little things the heart finds its morning and is refreshed.” I believe these “little things” are the only true sources of happiness in life.