Up@dawn 2.0

Monday, November 23, 2015

Installment 1, Section 12 - This I Believe

I am a control freak. I hate doing anything on a whim. The consequences can be unpredictable. I hate letting other people handle the organization of my family holidays. There will undoubtedly be numerous miscommunications and forgotten details. I hate not knowing what my schedule for any given day looks like. If I don’t plan it in advance I will likely forget to do something important. This is why I believe in routine. Step by step instructions. Tried and true methods. If it’s not broken don’t try to fix it. When everything else in life is complicated, my routine is simple, practical, and efficient. Controllable.

During my junior and senior years in high school, I was stressed almost constantly. My family and personal life was in emotional upheaval. My sister tried to commit suicide which ultimately launched me into a depressive spiral of my own. It was all I could do to get out of bed every morning, let alone keep my GPA from spiraling down with me. But still, band auditions, AP exams, ACTs, SATs, and college applications loomed ominously over me at every given moment. Everything seemed so impossibly out of my control. So I focused on my day-to-day, class-to-class, assignment-to-assignment, routine. I thought if I could just focus on taking on one task at a time, I could make it through the day. And the next day. And the day after that. And it worked. My routine, although seemingly endless for a while, kept me on track both at school and at home. While others often hate being “stuck” in the same routine, day after day, my routine was what saved me from myself. My routine gave me the sense of control that I had lost and the power to keep myself from falling that far ever again. 

-- Samantha Smith

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