Lely High School
Teacher: Ms. Duvall
First Place, 9 and 10th grades / High School Division
"In three words I can sum up everything I've learned about life: it goes on." When Robert Frost first penned this, I wonder if he knew so many people would fail to comprehend his valuable realization. Too often, people worry about how peers will view their actions.
Rarely does one stop and realize that without a preoccupation and adherence to obscure details, life would offer so much more. I turn to the right and see no opportunity, and then to my left where there doesn't seem to be any more answers than the other path. The only path that is clear for me to take is the path straight ahead, or as I call it, my destiny.
With age, one can either come upon gracious gifts or terrible obstacles. It all depends on how viewed. When I grow old and weary, I'd like to rest in peace and know that I squeezed the last bit of vitality from my soul by experiencing life to its fullest, enduring the good and bad. Until that day arrives, I want to be able to guide myself into the future with a sense of ease, with my transition into adulthood.
In life's journey, you meet some people you could love forever, and then you meet some that you absolutely detest. Either way, the strive for achievement requires help, and from many. Cooperation is a key element to success. From the lessons taught to us when we were mere toddlers, we learn that sharing and being kind to one another are the proper methods of childhood play.
This earliest of lessons was a starting point for the idea of cooperation to become drilled into our sponging minds. Large corporations that are often at odds with one another even use this basic principle of cooperation for the progression of humanity.
With the AIDS epidemic in Africa, music industries of all genres united as one for awareness, in Live Aid and Live Eight. In both programs, the need for help of our neighbors was expressed. The power of working as one can really accomplish remarkable goals.
Working as one or agreeing on something does not always come easy, however. With the current government in a controversial frenzy, being patriotic is not a top priority for many. A year ago, if I was asked my views on the current administration, I would rant for hours about the flaws many seem oblivious too. I still stand by my views, but I have opened my eyes, and in doing so, I see that without patriotism and respect for our country, nothing good can come.
Recently with my cousin returning home from Iraq, I have gained a great deal of respect for our soldiers. A good friend of mine has a brother fighting as well, and when the National Anthem is sung, or the Pledge of Allegiance is recited, I see a sparkle of pride in her eye. That pride makes life worth while. It teaches us to appreciate what is done for us, and embrace the opportunities we are given.
One must have perseverance in order to succeed. The strive and the push at the grain makes everything advance. The one person that practices this every day is my brother. Often he would come home tired from football practice and stay up until ungodly hours of the morning to finish his school work. Eventually his work paid off, he was rewarded with a full scholarship to M.I.T. Never before have I seen my family take so much pride in the achievements of their oldest child. It was all made possible because my brother persevered, and I can only hope to have the same spirit guide me.
If I were to stand at the threshold of tomorrow, and I had to pick three Laws of Life to guide me, I would have to say cooperation, patriotism, and perseverance are the ones I would use. Living through these virtues, I have a reason to wake up every morning, and go do the best to my abilities. I don't want to stand on the side lines; I want to be center-stage.