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This I Believe Essay by Madison Matz

Madison Matz is a senior at McCutcheon High School.

After graduation, Madison plans on attending the University of Southern Indiana to double major in Nursing and Radiologic and Imaging Sciences. Her goal is to become a Nurse Practitioner with a concentration in pediatrics.

This is her essay entitled, "Everything Happens for a Reason"

I believe that everything happens for a reason. When I was in fifth grade I watched my golden retriever take his last breath before walking across the rainbow bridge. In the seventh grade, I held my great grandma’s hand as she closed her eyes for the last time. I was fifteen when I saw Alzheimer’s take control of my grandma’s life and leave her without a trace of memory. Last year my dad left my mom, my sister, and me. I lost my best friend, my mom, to the new exciting life of dating as a single parent. All while trying to decide where I am supposed to go and who I am supposed to become within the next year. Loss, grief, and anger are not feelings I am unaccustomed to. Placing my trust in the fact that I do believe everything happens for a reason has allowed me to somehow accept the beautiful chaos my life has become. I believe I lost my first friend so that God could show me what unconditional love felt like. If you’ve never had a dog you probably don’t understand what it feels like to have a true companion.

When my great-grandma was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, she taught me to never give up even if your whole life is an uphill battle. Alzheimer’s can be a devastating disease, but watching my grandma never fail to recognize exactly who my grandpa was even though she couldn’t recognize her own children gave me hope in the concept of love. When my dad left I thought my whole world was falling apart. It wasn’t until later that I learned that some things need to fall apart in order for other things to come together. Letting go of my mom allowed me to discover that I am an independent and strong woman when I set my heart on something. It takes a lot to put blind trust into something you can't see or touch, but when I started believing that there is a bigger plan, my life was changed.

I no longer try to change the things I can not control. I am a more accepting person and I put my effort into things I can control and live in the present moment. Life is too short to worry about things you can not change. Even if you don’t like your situation it is important to embrace it and learn from it. Everything in life is a lesson if you listen hard enough. I believe that everything happens for a reason whether I am ready for it or not and life’s more enjoyable if I just listen and learn.