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Stick With It

I believe that when you make a good decision that you feel strongly about, you should stick with it no matter how hard it is, or how strange other people think it is.
When I was nine, I rode my bike to a golf course every weekend. The road was along dirt paths, and bumpy lanes behind my house, through fields with raspberries, sheep, and horses. At the golf course, they had the most amazing, delicious, perfect hamburgers in the whole world. After a round of golf for my parents, and an hour of hunting frogs (we let them free afterwards) for my sister and I, we would sit outside by the driving range, and eat these burgers of heaven, sipping from a glass of cool ice tea. I looked forward to that lunch all week.
One day, as we were riding to the golf course, a group of cows walked past us.
“There goes our lunch,” My parents said.
I looked closely at the cows. Those cows ate from the fields we passed every weekend. They lived right by my house, were probably the same cows we saw walking down our street every morning. Some had brown spots, some were white, they were a little dirty, and most looked underfed. There were little baby cows tagging behind big mama cows. One of the moms looked right at me, almost through me with those huge, sad cow eyes.
That was it, “Mom, I’m not going to eat cows anymore!”
I’m pretty sure for a while they thought it was a phase. Being young, I’m sure I did stuff like that all the time. However, I didn’t have a hamburger that day, or the week after, or ever again pretty much. I loved meat. But I didn’t need it, or want it anymore.
I started out not eating only beef, but one day I realized as we passed a bunch of sheep and pigs, that they were our food too! After that I only ate chicken and fish (I do need some protein after all).
At first it was really hard to stick with my new “diet.” I made up silly rules, like “on your birthday, you can have a hamburger.” Or, “if it’s a special occasion, it’s OK.” But now, I find it hard to eat meat.
I learned that making a decision that you want to stick with is much harder than it seems like it should be. Once I decided to stop eating meat, I felt like I could make up my mind about anything I wanted to.
This ability to say “nope, don’t want it,” Helped me a lot later in life with things I needed to stop. When I was in a group and we had to quit something we were addicted to (chocolate in my case), I was one of the only people who was able to stay “quitted.” When I make a decision, changing my mind makes me feel guilty about not being strong enough to stick with it. I learned that I have enough courage to try something different when I was just nine years old! What other good decisions could I stick with?




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