What I'm Capable of. | Teen Ink

What I'm Capable of.

October 18, 2007
By Anonymous

As we enter the cold, dim hallway, there is nothing but silence. It smells like throw up and makes me gag. The walls are cracked and the blue paint is rusty. We come into a room with several worn down windows surrounded by brown lines. I see so many women but I hear so few voices. I sit down in a cold metal chair and take a look around. I catch a women's glance and her eyes are bruised and sad. She is wearing a long dress to cover what I imagine to be more bruises. I see their kids in the far corner of the room. They are all quietly playing with hand-me-down toys. I get to talk to the ladies and they tell me stories about how the men they thought they loved physically and emotionally abused them. I don't get to talk to the kids, but I imagine their stories are similar.

I step out of a black, '94 Volvo in the middle of downtown Atlanta in a small abandoned parking lot next to Turner Field and the Braves Stadium. There is a long line of people full of sad-looking people with ragged clothes and Styrofoam trays in their hands, ready to be served. I stand behind a white, clean fold up table and serve mashed potatoes to each person that goes by. There is the man who was born homeless and doesn't know any other way to live. There is the women who came to America because she thought she would have a better life. There is the big family who had to leave their home town because of hurricane Katrina. I listen to all their stories, each one having a different beginning. Somehow they all ended up in the same place. Later on as everything is picked up and packed to a truck, I see a women and her boyfriend getting out a cardboard box and setting it up for shelter. She tells me she likes to call it her mansion.

In class there is a guy and the minute he arrives he is pushed around and made fun of by the other boys. He quietly sits down at his desk fighting back the tears. As the teacher starts talking, he pulls out a book and gets lost in another world. I see little smiles form on his face as he flips every page, anxious to see what happened next. He looks at me and I give him a smile, letting him know that everything will be okay. He smiles back.

An unknown person once said, “to the world you may be one person, but to one person you may be the world”. Taking time to listen to another persons problems, feeding a hungry person a good meal or even letting a lonely person know that you care about them are all ways to help make the world a better place. Anyone can do it, all you have to do is try. People always talk about making a difference and changing the world, but they don't do anything about it. I proposed a long time ago not to be one of those people. I am going to make a difference and I am going to show people what I'm capable of without just talking about it.

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