How I Found My Future in My Past

Every day, I create and build upon countless memories that have an extreme impact on my life. One very special memory, which will stay with me for the rest of my life, occurred when I first received my acceptance letter into the Hospital Volunteer Services program. Three years ago, I was an incoming sophomore and I had a completely boring summer planned. My mom suggested that I apply to be a volunteer at her work, so I did. On that warm early-June afternoon, I received the confirmation of the ultimate summer.

I was assigned to three different locations, the hospital gift shop, the daycare, and a women’s’ support group. The location I loved the most was the employee daycare center called The Child Development Center (CDC). There, I would help keep an eye on a group of children ranging from the ages of 0-6 years old. I played with slime and play dough; helped them create dozens of spin arts and pirate hats to take home; and aided them in having a fantastic summer. What I learned there changed my life forever.

The moment I first entered the Child Development Center, I fell head-over-heels in love with every single one of the kids. The babies had a magical way of making me feel needed and loved. The toddlers showed such compassion and trust towards me that I felt on cloud nine. The preschoolers “adopted” me as their older sister for the summer. I never imagined that children so very young could be interested in the same music, movies and even playground games as me! I even was able to get a little boy, who would not talk to anybody else, to tell me all about Transformers the movie that he saw over the weekend! Another little girl told me all about her obsession with Silly Bandz and actually gave me one in the shape of a dolphin, my favorite animal! Their innocent and imaginative minds opened my eyes and heart to the idea of being with young children as a career.

Each week at the Child Development Center, there was a specific theme. One week the theme was “Under the Sea”, while another week was “Let’s Go Camping!” My absolute favorite themed week has always been the Carnival week. We, the volunteers, had to set up a group of simple carnival activities for the older kids to experience. There was a “Pin the Nose on the Clown” game, face painting, and even a “skee-ball” game using a set of plastic bowling pins and a bouncy ball! Participating in all the activities and giving out small prizes to the kids, made that week amazing!

Three summers later, I continue to volunteer my time at the Hospital Child Development Center. Having watched all those amazing kids grow up, I can honestly say that I have an entirely new outlook on life. One moment they are just beginning to talk and crawl around, and the next they are running around telling me about their daily lives. My eyes well up with tears when I imagine them maybe one day taking the time to go back to their beloved CDC and witnessing youngsters grow up as I have watched all of them. I dream of being a teacher, a mentor, a mother, to young children for the rest of my life. College is the next step on my path to making a lifetime of unforgettable memories, centered on the loves of my life: kids.





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aurum_angel said...
Mar. 26, 2012 at 1:50 pm
This is such a great essay! I love how it's such a positive story. You have a great style of writing!
 
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