Posts Tagged ‘life changing’

The day that changed me

I woke up as if it was a normal day but little did I know
that Sunday morning was going to change my life forever. I was soaking up the sun and talking to my mom. All of a sudden I had a sudden urge to help children that was less fortunate than me. I was flabbergasted because I was not sure where that idea came from but I knew that I had to do it. It was in the middle
of my holidays and not many places would be open then but I had to call somewhere and find out a way to help others. I got the phone book and started to look for an organisation that helps children but not children with aids because aids was something everyone does. I wanted to help those children who were less known than the kids with Aids. My mom told me about CHOC. I was a 10 year old child who was calling an organisation that helped children older and younger than me. I picked up the phone, my heart was racing because I did not know what exactly CHOC did but it was “calling” me, and a lady by the name of
Sadie answered the phone. My heart stopped because I was not expecting anyone to pick up the phone and now that someone had, I had to decide if I wanted to commit my life to helping others. “Hello. My name is Ashlee Zlotnick. Honestly I am not sure why I am calling you but I have the sudden need to help out others less fortunate than me.” My first words to Sadie were not very positive but I made an appointment with her to learn about CHOC and how I can help out no matter what.

The next week I met up with Sadie at the CHOC house. I was
sitting on the couch and I was scared to be there because I found out that CHOC is a safe haven for children who have cancer and need a place to stay whilst they are having their treatment done as well as an organisation to fund their very expensive treatments and procedures. One of the children there came up to me and I pulled away from her because I was scared I was going to get cancer just by touching her. I was uneducated about cancer however I knew about Aids. My mom explained to me that cancer is something that is in your body and is not contagious. I felt ashamed of the way I treated that child and embarrassed that
I was so uneducated about this disease. I had yet another epiphany. I needed to not only help these children raise money but I had a need to get to know them on a personal level. I walked into CHOC house as a normal citation and I walked out a volunteer.

CHOC has changed my life tremendously and I
would not have been a part of it if it wasn’t for that Sunday morning epiphany. CHOC has opened up my eyes to a more positive way of looking at life. Because of CHOC, I now look at life through eyes of an optimist and I have the children to thank for that. They have not only given me someone to focus my energy on
but they have also given me a life lesson and that is: there is always light at the end of the tunnel and where there is not light, there is a torch waiting to help me find my way out.

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The Jasmine tree

By: Ashlee Zlotnick

Looking out the window today, I realised something miraculous. A tree that not so long ago bare and fragile, has now turned into a beautiful, healthy Jasmine tree and I started to think a nouit life.

You know life is a lot like a Jasmine tree. A few years ago, I thought life could not get any better. I started grade 4, a new friendship and I began to discover who I am as an individual, just like a tree who has gone from a seed and is now slowly beginning to look like something. A few months pass and the tree will get stronger and start to take form, so too do I. I began to become the girl I am today and I got emotionally stronger.

Winter comes along and the tree loses its’ flowers and colour and becomes bare again, in life we go through winters much like nature. My first real winter was when I lost my grandfather nearly 11 years ago. After that well I have lost best friends to popularity and drugs. I thought I would never see spring again. It felt as if ‘winter’ was never ending and my life was just getting worse and worse until… 

I began to see flowers blossoming on my life tree. I reconnected with old friends of mine and now we are inseparable. I met new people and they are there for me no matter what. Just like a tree knows that no matter how cold winter is, spring is next and it is the time for new flowers ro bloom and relationships to grow.

A human life is just like nature. No matter how cold and bad out winter is, spring is always next and a new beginning will bloom. Sure some winters are worse that others but you must look outside and remember that you too will soon begin to bloom and look as gorgeous as a Jasmine tree is spring.

Not Waving but Drowning

By Ashlee Zlotnick

Being a life guard isn’t easy. I mean not only are you are responsible for a lot of lives but you also have to be alert all the time. Hi my name is Jess and I am a life guard at one of the busiest beaches is Durban. I have been working here for about 6 months now and I love every moment of it.

Being a life guard has its pro’s and con’s but the best thing is that every girl wants to date me. Hey it’s a rough job but someone has to do it. Everywhere I go I hear, “Hey Jess, here is my number call me.” Or, “Oh my Gosh, it’s Jess, he is so attractive!” Yup the girls love me and I thought it was amazing until that awful day…

I got up one morning the same as I do every day.” Good morning Jess. How did you sleep?” says my mom, “Hey mom, I slept like an angel.” I got dressed and went to work. I had a feeling in the pit of my stomach as if something was wrong.” Jess! You late as usual.” My boss Molly doesn’t like me that much. I ran to the life guard station, put my shades on and sat down. A lot of people wave at me, so I waved back. The day went by slowly and it was now lunch time. More people come to the beach about now so we are more alert at this time of the day. The sun was reflecting on the choppy sea, it was difficult to see the people in the crystal blue sea when the sun is in your eyes. I saw a glimpse of a hand in the air. I thought she was waving at me so I waved back. For some obscure reason she was still waving. “ Jess, she is not waving, she is drowning! Go save her.” When Molly said that I froze. I could hear my heart beat in my ears. Molly hit me and ran to save the girl. I jumped into the water. It was so cold and she seemed so far away from me. I kept on thinking about how much time I have wasted all because I thought she was waving at me. The team go to her and brought her back ashore. I looked at her face and body. She was blue and hypothermic. She looked so innocent and helpless. We did everything we could but we could not save her.

She was only 14 years old and because of me she is now dead. I gave Molly my badge without saying a word. I walked away and never looked back. Ever since that awful day I have never been anywhere near a beach. I keep playing that day over and over in my head and then I remember why I have not been in water for 3 years.