The Power of Glitter

Kayla - Atlanta, Georgia
Entered on March 11, 2009
Age Group: Under 18

I believe in the power of glitter. All different kinds. Red, blue, green, pink, gold, silver, the see-through kind that looks a lot like snowflakes- even black glitter. As far as I know, it’s relatively cheap, quite sparkly, and ideal for almost any craft project. Glitter is flawless. Once opened glitter is also omnipresent, and I am thoroughly convinced the tiny sparkles could survive a nuclear holocaust. Glitter is God’s gift to mankind.

Don’t laugh. Glitter can change your life.

I had four hours. Four hours and four floors. I knocked twice, and raised my hand to shield my eyes as I awkwardly unlocked the door and searched for the light switch. You never could be sure one of the clowns wasn’t in there changing costume, or doing something weird. Lucky for me the coast was clear, and I began pulling an assortment of items off the shelves and searching through a few of the unmarked boxes. I needed scissors, glue, construction paper, googly eyes, markers, foam letters, NASCAR stickers, bubbles, and most importantly glitter. I placed everything neatly on top of the vacant clown’s makeup station and began restocking my cart.

The cart itself had seen better days. It was ugly to say the least, and it squeaked. I am pretty confident that even if the patients could not see my cherry red polo wandering the hallways, they could at least hear me coming. The wheels were a bit crooked and I ran into things a lot. Once I even ran into a nurse, and the foam alphabet went flying. I think I turned a shade of red brighter than my uniform. But none of that really mattered. What really mattered was the kids, and what made them happy.

My job was relatively simple. I was in charge of the only official “Art Cart” you could find within the walls of the Children’s Hospital of Atlanta. So I went from room to room, knocking softly on doors, and asking the children if they would be interested in any art supplies. They rarely declined, and they almost always wanted me to stay and help them with a project. One particular patient would get so excited when she heard me squeaking by her room, I once witnessed one of the nurses have to physically restrain her, because apparently I was not walking fast enough that day.

Whether it was the little girl with down syndrome, the little boy who always asked me for food, or the child whose family just did not seem to be around, they all had one thing in common. The glitter. They loved it. I could try to explain the look on their faces when they forgot they were sick or the relief I saw in each parent’s eyes when they could finally take a coffee break or a quick nap, but I doubt I could do it justice.

That summer, as I watched the tiny specs of every color glitter you could possibly imagine flying about through an otherwise bland hospital room, I realized I was making a difference in the world. It was only small one, but important nonetheless. The power of glitter is endless, this I believe.