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"Someone to be my friend." - the topic "What drives me".


weebo_girl 2 / 5  
Oct 6, 2011   #1
Hey people! This is the essay i have written for my college applications in response to the prompt "topic of your own". I'd be grateful is you gave me your honest opinion. Thank you!

WHAT DRIVES ME

The boy gave me a long, wistful look.
"I've always longed for someone to talk to," he said. "Someone to be my friend."
I hugged him and told him that everything was going to be alright. But I suspected that even he could hear the hollowness of my false promise.

A look around my room would tell you what sort of person I am. My notice board is perpetually covered with articles about the brain, the immune system and advancements in medicine and technology. I make sure I record every program on Discovery Science and National Geographic that somehow involves biology. This captivation with biology narrows down to a profound passion for genetics. And it all started with that one day, that one meeting with the boy who changed my life forever.

I don't really believe in celebrating my birthday because I don't think it is much of an achievement to have popped out of my mother's stomach in a caesarian. I prefer spending this day with the underprivileged in orphanages and blind schools. Year after year, I meet these children on the weekend closest to my birthday, give them sweets, new clothes, and play with them. I love their company because they are guileless. Their innocent love and genuine gratitude deeply touches me. I hold every visit to the orphanage and blind school very special, but the visit I made to the orphanage on my fifteenth birthday was most memorable.

That day, I was playing with the children as usual, when I noticed a boy sitting alone on a bench a few yards away, staring at the other children in awe. I had never seen this child before in my previous visits to the orphanage. I beckoned to him to join us, but he shook his head and averted his eyes. His peculiar behavior aroused my curiosity, and I walked towards him.

The boy seemed to be around ten, with hollow eyes set in a wan face. I tried to strike up a conversation with him, but he got up and ran away. Unable to understand his demeanor, I went back to play with the other children. But this time I was not welcomed. They began to run away from me screaming, "Don't touch me!" I was thoroughly shocked, and knew something was wrong.

I approached one of the caretakers at the orphanage and narrated what had happened. She smiled and explained to me that the boy who had run away from me had AIDS. I gaped at her in amazement when she told me to wash my hands properly before touching the other children. My shock turned to anger as she continued to tell me how the boy was not allowed to play with the other children or eat with them. He was kept in a separate room, away from others, to ensure that his illness did not spread.

Her ignorance astonished me; I knew that the disease did not spread merely by touching, or playing with affected patients! Uttering a few choice curses, I ran out to look for the boy. I found him under a tree, weeping. My heart went out to him and I hugged him, telling him that I knew what he was going through. But my consolations wouldn't help ease the pain or misery. AIDS had no cure.

I spent the rest of my day talking to him and learning how pathetic life was for a child with AIDS. When he tried to make friends, all the other children would run away from him. The mental trauma he went through every day agonized me, and I left, promising to take him out someday.

That day when I went back home, I read several articles on AIDS. Terror gripped me when I read about the infections, the tumors, the dementia...I couldn't help washing my hands after reading that, the very hands that had touched the boy. And I felt guilty immediately after that; if educated people like me didn't know better, it was no wonder that AIDS patients had to lead such a sad life of isolation and estrangement.

I tried to understand why the disease was so hard to cure. This made me wonder if I could ever find a cure, if I could bring about a change in these patients' woebegone lives. For the time being, I decided to work on posters and charts to spread awareness about the disease. I wanted people to know that there was no need to ostracize those afflicted with the disease. The next week, I went back to the orphanage with a small presentation about AIDS and explained to them that it would be safe to play with the boy and eat with him.

It angered and disheartened me when I saw that my presentation had very little effect on the children and caretakers. However, I have come to accept that things don't change overnight and I take satisfaction from the fact that some children did go and shake hands with the boy after I spoke to them. I continue to hope that things will change for the better and the boy will be accepted someday.

I had known nothing about AIDS back then. But a brief encounter with this ten-year-old boy had changed things for me forever. It was only when I saw him that I realized how fortunate I am to be living the life that I have. It had made me want to find a cure for AIDS, to make a change in the miserable lives of these patients and to save the millions of kids suffering from this crippling disease, from the humiliation of isolation and social rejection. It is because of him, and other children like him, who are marooned and ostracized by the society every day that I am driven by my goal to pursue biomedical engineering.
EF_Susan - / 2,364 12  
Oct 6, 2011   #2
I make sure I record every program on Discovery Science and National Geographic that somehow involves biology.

AndIt all started with that one day, that one meeting with the boy who changed my life forever.

I don't really believe in celebrating my birthday because I don't think it is much of an achievement to have popped out of my mother's stomach in a Cesarean .---Great sentence!

Their innocent love and genuine gratitude deeply touches me.

I wanted people to know that there was no need to ostracize those afflicted with the diseaseit .

It is because of him, and other children like him, who are marooned and ostracized by the society every day that I am driven by my goal to pursue biomedical engineering.---Another great sentence.

You are an excellent writer and a very nice person. Good luck in all you do!

:)
OP weebo_girl 2 / 5  
Oct 7, 2011   #3
Thank you so much for your help and encouragement :)
etron 5 / 17  
Oct 7, 2011   #4
This is excellent. The only thing that I could think of was that the paragraph introducing yourself and your love for Bio did not tie in smoothly with the rest of the essay. Either work on that and relate it better to the essay, or find a transition, or rewrite it. Otherwise, I loved the essay. You really work your pathos and ethos! Great writing.
OP weebo_girl 2 / 5  
Oct 7, 2011   #5
Thank you for your help Emily :) Can you suggest some way in which i can edit it to make it sound better?


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