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Personal Narrative: My Experience At Camp Koski

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“Look at me, Ally! I’m riding a horse all by myself!” Kylie giggled to me with a smile larger than life on her face. This was just one of many small, but special moments I experienced at Camp Koski. Mrs. Patti Koski, my family friend, grew up with an autistic brother. She became a speech pathologist and worked with children who had special needs. However, she wanted to do more. Because of Jimmy, her brother, it was always her dream to open a summer camp for children diagnosed with autism. In the summer of 2009 she turned her dream into reality and moved from suburban Perry Hall to the countryside in Hydes, Maryland. Complete with 12 rolling acres, an acre large pond, a brand new pool, woods to explore, and a large, red barn, this became the…show more content…
In all honesty, as a young girl who had never been exposed to special needs or those different than me, I was very nervous and did not know what to expect. I was not looking forward to going. My mom convinced me to try it for a day, if not for myself, at least to give Mrs. Patti some helping hands. We drove down the winding country roads and finally turned left down the long asphalt driveway. I got out of the car and immediately was greeted by a camper named Jake. He came up to me and said excitedly, “Hi I’m Jake, what’s your name?” and gave me a big high five. In that moment I realized these kids were not so different from me after all. They have the desire to make friends and have relationships with their peers just as much as we…show more content…
It has taught me to live life putting my best foot forward through all challenges that lie ahead of us, disabled or not. It is easy to complain about the small things; I do it as well. However, after volunteering at Camp, I have tried to become more aware and count my blessings rather than focus on the negative. I have learned to embrace similarities, rather than solely focus on differences. This experience has inspired me to hopefully become a physical therapist, specifically working in the field of children with disabilities. I would never trade any of this experience for the world and I hope to continue making others smile. Being able to watch others grow and have their moment saying, “look at me, Ally!” and shining with self-pride and accomplishment will make me the
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