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Steady Grindin'

It’s official… I am an official member of Toastmasters of California State University, San Bernardino (CSUSB). The club has welcomed me with open arms and I am very appreciative of that. I’m playing the role of helping the club out with ideas so it could be more visible to people interested in improving their public speaking skills.


I only got to speak once about my experience with cancer, and I’m ready to hit it out the park the next time I speak. I have a few ideas which I think will be powerful and catch everybody listening off guard and interested in what I’m talking about.


When I first started going to Toastmasters, I was shy to speak because I never spoke about my experience with having cancer in front of a crowd of people before. Now that I’ve had some experience, I ready to speak every chance I get because I want to be comfortable with my material and I know what I have to say is powerful.


I also became an official volunteer at Loma Linda Hospital. I chose to volunteer in the Children’s Hospital in the Hematology and Oncology department. This was the exact department I was at 16 years ago when I was sick with cancer called Osteosarcoma.


New volunteers had to first go to a training class before getting started in the department they wish to volunteer in. I will be working with the Child Life assistant. The volunteers job is to be the extra ears and hands to help in any way they can. They are there to speak and hangout with patients, and in some circumstances one-on-one if they are shy.


The volunteers job is to play with the children in the playroom, and during my shift two boys around four and five years old came into the playroom. We painted and played with the toys that were available in the playroom. Walking into the playroom took me back to the days when I was sick and seeing one of the boys with his IV pole also brought back a lot of memories.


During my shift, I asked the Child Life Assistant if I could bring my personal tablet with my PowerPoint Presentation to show the patients that I was once in their shoes and I know what they are going through. She said I to get permission from James, who also works in the Hematology and Oncology department.


I want to be able to show my PowerPoint in the patient’s room, but due to the safety of the patients and myself. I might not be able to show my PowerPoint Presentation that has pictures of me when I was sick at 14 and 17 years old. I didn’t get to talk to James before my shift ended, but I’m going to make sure to show him what I’ve been working on during my next shift next Monday.


Overall I had a really good first day of training as a Child Life volunteer. I decided I’m going to volunteer every Monday and Friday for three hours each day. In due time, I’m hoping that soon I will be able to express myself the way I envisioned and help people in the process.

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