Everyone knows the story of the Little Engine That Could right? A rather long train needs to be pulled over an extremely large mountain and is unable to go over the mountain by itself. The only one willing to help is a little blue engine. No one thought this little engine would be strong enough to pull such a large train over the mountain, and truth be told it was having some doubts as well. However, it didn’t give up despite the negative thoughts from others and despite its seeming disadvantage and weakness. It merely kept repeating over and over again, “I think I can. I think I can.” Of course, the little engine was able to pull the train over the mountain and became a hero.
What’s more important than the actual story is the moral of the story. No matter how many people were against him, no matter how difficult things seemed or the amount of bad thoughts getting in the way, it didn’t just give up. It didn’t say “I can’t” before it even tried. It gave its best shot, set its mind to succeeding, and accomplished what it set out to do. It wasn’t easy, but nothing is supposed to come easy. The reward at the end was well worth it.
The reason I told you this story is because right now I feel like that little engine. Last week, as part of our school supply drive, we wrote letters to send to people asking them to help donate in any way possible. I was excited at the prospect of getting underfoot. I e-mailed a few of my letters out already. This past Monday, I saw some of my classmates entering the room already with donations. It had only been a week. I, on the other hand, sent out my e-mails and have heard nothing back. I re-emailed them a couple of days later and still heard nothing back. I sit here waiting and waiting with that fear in the back of my head that failure looms close somewhat freaking me out.
Right now, I am the Little Engine That Could, trudging up the mountain. I can’t think of failure. I can’t let the frustration get to me and keep me from trying my hardest to succeed. I need to follow that little engine’s example and keep saying, “I think I can. I think I can.” Because I can. And I will.
I sent out my other three letters in class on Monday. Since these are going through the mail, I expect they probably arrived today or will arrive sometime within the next couple of days. So I am holding out hope that these three letters will make more of an impact than the other two I have already delivered. I eagerly await responses. I feel like I am never going to make it up that hill. But that mantra keeps repeating in my head. Success is right around the corner. I need to feel it. I need to believe it.
“I think I can. I think I can.”