by T. F., Taunton, MA
The gloomy, unfriendly, scary and depressing environment is the first impression people often experience when they enter a hospital. After volunteering at Morton Hospital and Medical Center for only a month, my view has dramatically changed. I looked forward to going into the friendly environment. I work a number of days each week helping in departments that need me. The whole staff is friendly and I enjoy helping.
My day-to-day activities vary from delivering mail to transporting medication. I do most of my work helping in the day surgery unit. Another activity I often do is refilling patients' water pitchers and delivering flowers.
It is probably delivering flowers that I find the most rewarding. The smiles on people's faces when I walk into their rooms with a basket of flowers is more rewarding than a paycheck. It is during this time that I see the sad part of a hospital. Some people are too ill to even realize I just put flowers in their room or the flowers have to be sent back to the florist because the patient is no longer "in house" (meaning s/he died).
I think working in a hospital has changed me. I have realized that my so-called big problems such as "bad hair days" don't compare to those in the I.C.U.(intensive care unit). It has made me see that if everything is going fine today, then we should enjoy it because we don't know what can happen tomorrow. Through my experiences at Morton Hospital, I have gained a respect for the handicapped.
I became involved in community service because I thought it would be beneficial to my plans for a career in the medical profession. I would suggest community service to a friend because of the wonderful feeling I get from the smiles and simple "thank you's" from people. My community has benefited from my doing community service because I just know my presence in the hospital is appreciated by all.
This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.