My Starfish

Discuss an accomplishment, event, or realization that sparked a period of personal growth and a new understanding of yourself or others


“A girl walked along the beach tossing marooned starfish back into the sea. How could she possibly save them all? Why try when the act seemed futile? A man discouraged her from her task but she ignored his opposition.”

I heard this story at one of my bridging ceremonies for Girl Scouts. The narrator intended to instill in us never to think that an act of kindness was too small to make an impact. Even though the girl in the story could not save all of the starfish, she knew she had made a difference in the lives of the ones she did save.

I ran with this idea that I, an insignificant speck in the vast universe, could actually do something substantial.

My first opportunity was an unwelcome one. Everything was loud. Then, silent. I received the text in the cafeteria of my high school. It was so unexpected. My cousin was blunt: “I am going into brain surgery.” I typed with fervor, awaiting some explanation. There was no response. I was left on the edge of a cliff. I felt so alone because I did not know what was happening. All I knew was that my cousin Jake was in the operating room 600 miles away from me in North Carolina. What could I do? How could I help him at this distance? Later that day I discovered that he had been diagnosed...

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