I’ve recently been looking for small ways I can help benefit my community.
From smiling at strangers to striking up a conversation with someone on the bus, I’ve been trying my hardest to be the best version of myself that I can.
However, I wanted to do more.
I wanted something that would fill my heart with joy, more so than a smile at a stranger.
One day in homeroom we were choosing our exploratories. Three days in our cycle we have one period where we select something to do from a list. Ultimate frisbee, drama games, and learning Greek are all common options.
As I was browsing through the list of choices, one stood out.
One that would really help me make a difference in my community.
“Write a Biography For a Senior”
To be honest, I didn’t really realize that this would help me feel like I’ve made a difference. I was really interested that I could spend time writing in a new form I wasn’t used to.
But now after completing most of this exploratory, I really feel that warm sensation in my heart.
As we arrived in the seniors home, we entered the foyer where five seniors were standing, beaming with joy.
I was introduced to Betty Ingram, who I would soon learn more than I could even imagine about her.
After the short half hour, I felt like I had known Betty my whole life. I learned that she was a bacteriologist and a paleontologist, lived in Montreal during the FLQ issue, and learned all about her love of her husband’s dimples.
After meeting with her five more times, I feel like I have been there by her side through all the sorrow, love, joy and hate.
The twist about this project is that Betty doesn’t know that I am composing a biography on her life.
All she knows is that she’s helping me with my interview skills. She also thinks that our last interview session was the last time I would meet with her.
Little does she know that I am making a scrapbook and giving her a bouquet of flowers in two weeks.
This experience is one of my top three moments of middle school.
I have overcome my slight fear of elderly people, learned how to properly interview, and made a wonderful, elegant new friend.
I have found so much joy in spending time with Betty. Even on really bad days, she manages to project a smile on my face. I’m really going to miss spending time with Betty. I really hope that I can come visit her in the future. Seeing her face light up when I come into her apartment, releases that warm feeling in my heart that I have been trying so hard to find.