I was assisting chair-side in the screening room of the dental clinic in Petit-Bourg, Haiti when six-year-old Annasia poked her head around the edge of the makeshift plastic tablecloth wall to inspect the room. When our eyes met, I could tell that she was frightened, so I cautiously approached her and took her small hand. Although we were divided by cultural differences, when I greeted her with “Bonjour!” and a smile, she smiled back, and I knew that I had gained her trust. After gently placing her in the seat, I let her play with my flashlight, mirror, and gloves to show her that these instruments would not hurt her. After working in the ninety-degree clinic for ten hours, I was still thrilled to be assisting in the evaluation and treatment of Annasia. After leaving Haiti, I was filled with the joy and happiness of knowing that I had helped relieve the pain and suffering of dozens of patients. For this, I believe “Do Good. Feel Good”.
However, for every action, there is an equal and opposing reaction. Being a student-athlete in college, there were many challenges. The hardest of those challenges being time-management. With only 24 hours in a day, poorly prioritizing class, practice, games, travel, studying, sleeping, and time with friends can lead to negative consequences. We have all been there before, when we choose what we want to do, whether it is time with friends and family or participating in extracurricular activities, over what we need to do, such as work or school. When I came home at Christmas with a D in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology and had to tell my father that the $40,000 annually that he paid for my tuition was obviously not being taken seriously, I was overwhelmed with feelings of sadness, disappointment, remorse, and guilt. For this, I believe “Do Bad. Feel Bad”.
I believe that on a daily basis, we ride a roller-coaster of these opposing forces. While we attempt to have more “Do Good. Feel Good” than “Do Bad. Feel Bad”, even good intentions sometimes lead to negative results. I believe that when we complete good deeds, in our core as humans with intelligent design, the result that we experience is euphoric in nature, but when we fall short in failure the result is despairing.
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