This I Believe

I have the worst writer’s block right now. I keep staring at that blinking cursor. I have so many stories left to tell. But the words are not coming out the way I want.


Instead I thought I would share an essay I wrote for NPR. It was for a project called This I Believe. I was 27 and had had 3 heart surgeries in the past year. I went on to have 2 more after writing this.

I still feel this way about my life. I try not to be too serious on here. Or too much in anyone’s face about religion, optimism, or personal philosophies. I genuinely believe all my problems and troubles have made me a better person. And definitely a more understanding one. And that optimism is something I cannot help or control any more than I can stop being tall or having brown eyes.


I hate my older writings. I try to avoid even reading it. But, I actually still like this. NPR did put it in their archives somewhere. It isn’t funny, at all. Feel free to skip it and wait for my next post which will hopefully be funnier. Here it is:



My family was quite poor when I was a child. And I was always acutely aware of the expense I caused my parents. Out of seven children, I was always the one who needed things. I used to wonder, why me?

At six it was speech therapy, I had a tongue abnormality. At eight it was braces, I had a jaw deformity. At eleven it was glasses. And last year, at twenty-six, it was heart surgery, I had a heart defect.

Actually it was multiple heart surgeries. At this moment in my life; the cardiologist isn’t sure of my prognosis. Will I need more heart surgeries? Will I need to be on medication for the rest of my life? Will I die?

At first I wanted to be mad at someone. It wasn’t fair. But I don’t believe in God, and I don’t feel like I can blame my parents. (Even though they sometimes blame themselves).

Instead I came to a realization. Bad things will happen in my life, and so will good. I can learn from the bad, or not. And I can appreciate the good, or not. Whichever I please. But this I believe. My life will be as good as I want it to be. Or as bad as I allow it to be.

My perspective in life determines the type of life I lead. Now sometimes I wonder, why me? And then I think of how much I have changed for the better since my heart surgeries. I’m more aware of social issues and I care about them more. I volunteer. I’ve taken steps to live a more mindful and environmentally friendly lifestyle. I’m kinder to my friends, family, and strangers. I’m more forgiving. I even tip more. Why me? Well, why not me?


11 thoughts on “This I Believe

  1. I have total writers block at the moment too. Everything I write seems wrong or contrived. But wow fair play to you. You have been through some amount.

  2. “Why me? Well, why not me?” –> I wish more people would arrive at this realization. Good for you. And NPR is the shit. I’m not joking. I love NPR. I listened to it every day when driving to high school, because you know I was a cool kid.

    • I’ve been listening to it since high school too. I was also the cool kid. Sometimes I am amazed by how many things are in my life now because of NPR.

  3. I needed to read this today – I especially loved “My perspective in life determines the type of life I lead.” My husband of 26-years told me over the weekend that he didn’t love me and wants a divorce. I’m just trying to live in the moment instead of panicking about what might happen in the future. Due to finances, we still have to live in the same house for several more months, so I don’t want to be scared or angry or heartbroken all the time. Although sometimes these emotions hit, I’m trying to remember that, after all is said and done, this may be something I have to go through to get to something better on the other side.

    PS – it’s going to be interesting to see what happens to my writing for the next little while. However, I don’t think there is anything wrong with the occasional serious and/or sad post

    • Oh. My. God. That’s terrible. I am so sorry.

      Well, I am glad my post helped you in some way. I am always so hesitant to open up about anything with anyone. Being serious is very scary for me. And I am sure your writing will not suffer in quality. It may just be a different content for a while. And that’s okay too. I’m here to tell stories about my life. And all the bad stuff is a part of it. And I think that is also true for you. I am holding space for you.

  4. I love this introspective piece from you. It reminds me of my post from last week when I was feeling very much the same. (in my defense, my mother had just been in town for 4 days, so I needed more alcohol).
    I think it’s a very balanced and healthy way to look at things, which I’m able to encompass…most of the time…until my mother comes in town. 🙂

    • We all have our off days. I know I do. It’s easy to get caught up in the day to day of life. I am guilty of it too. But my life is always ready to remind me that things could be so much worse. I try to pay attention to those lessons.

  5. Pingback: The Old Apartment | Cursitivity

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