Happiness is a Choice

Aaron - Huntington, West Virginia
Entered on December 2, 2005
Age Group: Under 18

When we are young children, one of the first lessons we are taught is to “play fair”. We are taught to share and treat others as we would like to be treated, “The Golden Rule”. We then expect that if we treat others fairly, we will be treated fairly. As we mature we discover that regardless how fair we treat people, life is not fair. As we confront issues in our lives and realize things are not always just, it is important to have a positive attitude and choose to be happy. While social unjust should not be endured, physical impairments must be accepted to be overcome.

In some way I feel that life has been rather unfair to me from the beginning. I was born with an extreme visually impairment. I use a long cane to travel and read Braille as my preferred school medium. The print textbook for my math class is only one book, while the Braille version is fifty-one bulky volumes. I learned early in my education that I might have to work harder than the other students in certain areas. I tend to have more homework, so when other student are playing videogames and watching television, I am doing homework. For years I would complain, “It’s not fair!” to my mother to which she would reply, “Well Aaron–.Life isn’t fair”. Throughout my life I have found this to be true at times, and have accepted it as a fact and moved past it.

I have made the choice to be happy in my life. Although I have much school work to complete, I am able to go to school with my friends and live at home instead of being sent to a school for the blind eight hours away. Instead of looking at the things in my life that get me down, I try to focus on the blessings God has given me. I have been blessed with an excellent memory ability which has aided me in remembering vast amounts of information for my school work. Support from my immediate and extended family as well as friends, teachers, and organizations has been more than one can fathom.

I believe that being happy is a choice you make. I was on the wrestling team at my middle school for three years. Instead of focusing on the fact that I never won a match for the first two years, I enjoyed being part of the team and participating in a sport like the other students. Currently I’m on my high school swim team and perform with the High School Jazz band.

Everyone has times in their lives that are not fair. A broken family, an ill parent, or too little money may make life seem unfair. Having a positive attitude and being thankful for the blessings you are given is the key to being happy. Life is not perfect for anyone. It is only in dealing with the “unfairness” of our lives that enriches the life we live. Sometimes we are the bug, something we are the windshield. Life cannot be perfect. If it were perfect, there would be nothing to live for.