Julia - Wellesley, Massachusetts
Entered on March 10, 2009
Age Group: Under 18
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The fast speed that life goes by makes it easy to forget what has gotten us to where we are. The experiences that we go through are what develop our character. I believe that it is important to remember what we have gone through to become the people we are.

Last year a friend of mine was going through a really rough time in her life. She was having trouble handling a lot of the stuff she was going through, and this all made her depressed. I felt as though I could not do anything to help her. This made me feel helpless and in over my head. In response to this, I wrote down my feelings and reactions to what was going on, because it was an upsetting experience. By writing this down, I sorted through my emotions but sadly did not think of ways to help. Since then I had forgotten about the entire ordeal because everyone moved on from what had happened. I was recently looking through the notebook I had written about it in. I had handled things very differently then than I would have now. By not helping it only worsened my friend’s situation, and I learned from that. If that had happened now, I would have tried to help my friend through her troubles, because I have learned ways to help friends when they are upset. This shows me how I have changed as a friend from that which is something I would be upset about forgetting.

I have learned that it is also important to remember how we have learned from what others have done for us. Every summer I go to sleep away camp. It is always really fun but at times I miss my friends and family at home. Two years ago when I went away to camp I received many letters from my close friends. These letters made me feel better instantly and caught me up with what was going on at home. Even though many of the letters were about little things that may seem silly and unimportant, it comforted me hearing about my friends. The letters are a little piece of my life that will always take me back to how I felt when I first opened the notes that filled me up with joy. I will cherish these letters forever because I learned from them. They showed me how a small act of kindness can really help someone out and I want to save the letters to remind myself that they taught me that.

All approaches of keeping memories are important in remembering how we have developed the qualities we have. If we remember our memories we will have a clearer sense of who we are as individuals. Doing so lets us know what has changed us as people, so we will not ever have to wonder how we have gotten to be who we are. This keeps our memories existent forever.