Aymee Yeh (left & her mom),16 years old (in 2010), who returned to Taiwan from Denver two years ago to attend Pu Tai Middle School.
Some experiences are priceless, and I mean, literally, priceless.
This summer, I encountered a significant turning point in life, psychologically speaking. How I came upon this change can be traced to the Little Stars Camp of Chung Tai. When I first arrived to participate in the camp counselor retreat I was both excited, yet a bit nervous as well. In four days time, my fellow teammates and I were introduced to the activities the children would be participating in following our training session. In addition, we were well prepared as to what to expect and how to react to all the possible types of challenges we would meet, even problems such as nose bleeds and constipation. Just like that, the first half of the program was over and we were getting ready to welcome the Little Stars. It was their turn to enjoy and have fun.
When the first sight of the little ones was caught, all the camp counselors were ecstatic. Well, actually, we had already begun to feel excited the night before. And thus marked the start of a very, very hectic four days and three nights. Through day and night, we resided with the kids of our own group. We were with them during all three meals, building up their excitement during the daytime as well as nighttime activities, and watching over them while they slept and dreamed. Overall, those few days were bustling with commotion and thrill. Needless to say, all the counselors and volunteers were worn-out, as well as overwhelmed.
From this experience, I have obtained some of the most valuable life lessons. Truth be told, towards the beginning of the camp, my tolerance and patience was on the edge of busting. Why? I was agitated beyond words. At the time, I thought, what in the world am I doing here? Why am I spending a week (and a day) of my summer dressed in clothes I wouldn’t even wear as pajamas taking care of a group of energetic little kids? Why am I choosing to take five minute showers at a place where I could be taking relaxing fifteen minute showers at home? Seriously, why?
However as time dragged on, my perspective totally turned 360 degrees. If I were asked to participate in the camp again next year, my answer would, undoubtedly, be absolutely yes! Wondering why again? The answer is simple. After the camp, I realized that looking the mirror, I am able to truly see who I am and suddenly, I actually understand so much more about myself, people around me, and life in general. Of course, all this couldn’t have been accomplished without the help of the masters, the other counselors, and the little kids. From the masters, I have acknowledged the happiness that can be acquired from benevolence and endurance. From my fellow counselors, the skills of perception and cooperation. Last but not least, from the younger ones, the ability to think about others before myself, in other words, selflessness. Because of the guidance, support, and encouragement of everyone at the Chung Tai Little Stars Camp, there is now a deeper meaning to my life, including my studies and social relationships. I have learned and grown so much during the course of that short week; it is an experience that I will truly never forget. Most importantly, I discovered a sense of sincerity that I had thought to be lost. Even from strangers, people treated each other not only with respect, but also with an attitude that was true, that was free from any fraudulence of any sort.
Really, as long as you are willing to look beyond the surface, you will discover a whole new world.