Understanding is Bliss

Vanessa - Hatfield, Pennsylvania
Entered on April 23, 2009
Age Group: 18 - 30
Themes: children
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This I believe. Ever since I was little, life was perfect. Well, maybe that’s an exaggeration but it seemed like it was. During the summer we would play outside in the backyard all day, swimming, playing tag, riding bikes, and so on. My mom would call us in for an elaborate home cooked meal of vegetables and fruits, even though we really just wanted grilled cheese or Ellio’s pizza. We’d spend the rest of the day covered head-to-toe with dirt and scratches, trying to find buried treasure. Eventually we would come to realize that all those treasures we found were bones and that my backyard would be considered, to some, a ‘pet cemetery’. Some days I think of how nice it would be to go back to those days when I didn’t need a job or had to work hard in school. The times when the only thing that matter was how fast I was or how far I could climb up that oak tree.

A lot of people could use the phrase, “Ignorance is bliss” but I have to disagree. I do miss not having a single care in the world but things are better since I’ve grown-up. Bliss can be defined as ‘pure happiness’ and being ignorant is not my idea of happiness. As a child, my ignorance kept me from understanding unconditional love. Love just came and left for me. I always thought love was just about “I love you” or constantly giving a person hugs, but I was wrong. It’s also reminding someone that you were thinking about them today or listening attentively even if you can’t relate to them at all.

Looking back and remembering all the times I was selfish and narrow-minded seemed like bliss then but now it is just disappointment. I realize how much I missed out on because of my ignorance and I would love to go back to fix it. All of those times where I was so blinded by wanting to win a game that my friends would get left in the dust. I didn’t even think of spending time with my family, or even realize how much they meant to me.

There are other things I miss too though, like that faith that a child has. Now, I am not talking about the ‘dip-your-toe-in-the-pool-to-check-the-temperature’ kind of belief. I’m talking about the full cannonball right in without any care of how cold it’ll be. It was easy to believe anything and anyone. It’s so free and careless but some bad decisions were made with that child-like faith.

I have stopped wanting to go back in time, to when nothing but me mattered. I have realized the importance of my experiences and of others experiences. I’ve chosen understanding over ignorance. This I believe.