Strep at Kennybrook

Alex - Bedford, New York
Entered on April 30, 2009
Age Group: Under 18
  • Listen to This I Believe on RadioPublic

  • Podcasts

    Sign up for our free, weekly podcast of featured essays. You can download recent episodes individually, or subscribe to automatically receive each podcast. Learn more.

  • FAQ

    Frequently asked questions about the This I Believe project, educational opportunities and more...

  • Top Essays USB Drive

    This USB drive contains 100 of the top This I Believe audio broadcasts of the last ten years, plus some favorites from Edward R. Murrow's radio series of the 1950s. It's perfect for personal or classroom use! Click here to learn more.

I believe in love and hope. One time where this belief came to be was three years ago at Camp Kennybrook. I had just found out I had strep throat. Of course, I had to call my mom and ask her if it was okay to sleep in the infirmary for five days. As I prayed for her to say no, she said absolutely. The total opposite. Now what? Now, I went back to my bunk and grabbed my sheets, pillow, and whatever else I could find until I had to go back. The old, unfriendly nurse told me to go pick my bed. I picked the one in the middle, kind of away from all of the other ones, and put my sheets down. About ten seconds later I heard the nurse call my name from the other room. She wants me to take my “meds”. Her name is Gladys.

After taking the gross medicine, I mumbled underneath my breath that I had a stomach ache. I didn’t mean for Gladys to hear. But of course, she is quick to get me Tums. I don’t feel very good about Tums. First day and already I have had enough, I thought. Now what? I quickly threw the Tums out the window and came back to her side. Thank Goodness she didn’t see, is all I was thinking about for the next five minutes. Next, she tells me to go rest in my bed. It eventually got late and really dark. I can hear Gladys all the way upstairs in her room snoring. All of a sudden—out of no where, I hear the front door to the infirmary slam shut. It was very quiet so I got a bit scared. Then, surprisingly, I see my two best friends pop their head into the kid’s room. My face was never brighter in my entire life! I had a huge grin on my face. Then realize that they are not only there to see me, but they had a huge bag with a whole bunch of my favorite things. Clothes, games, toys, music…everything!! I couldn’t love them more!! They saved me!!

I whispered so excitedly to them asking them why they are here, and they told me I had to stay quiet because Gladys didn’t know they were here—they weren’t allowed to be. I realize that my friends love and care about me in that moment right then and there. They would sacrifice getting in trouble by Gladys and counselors for coming into the infirmary in the middle of the night, just to see me and make sure I was feeling okay.

Once they were gone, even though I was still feeling sick and lonely I appreciated them coming. The whole rest of the night I was tired, but wouldn’t let myself go to sleep. I was honestly afraid of falling asleep in the infirmary. So, I thought I should keep myself occupied and look inside the huge bag to see what they brought me. I looked inside the side pocket first. They brought string for me to make bracelets. They knew that was my favorite thing to do when I was bored.

When morning came, I was exhausted but I knew I couldn’t fall asleep. I looked at the side of my bed and not even realizing I did it, I made sixteen bracelets in the course of the whole night!! Since I got kind of bored of making bracelets, I looked to see what else they brought me. I had a pack of cards in there, so I could play solitaire. Before I knew it, it was time for breakfast. Thank Goodness! I got to spend a whole meal away from Gladys. Or so I thought. She told me to tell her what I wanted so she could go out and get it because she didn’t want me near anyone. I thought, “I better get well soon because I CANNOT spend one more day in here!!”

This made me believe in hope because I really wanted to get out of there and I thought that with a little bit of hope I could leave sooner or later. This helped me because being in the infirmary for that long, while I was supposed to be in camp really brought down my thought of getting better soon. It was so frustrating for me to be in there for that long that I wanted to cry. But I knew that would have just made everything worse. On the bright side, I was allowed to call my mom every day instead of once a week. That also helped because I knew that talking to her would make things a lot better. She always knew how to cheer me up when I was down and that also made me believe in love. I felt loved whenever I called her because she always cared about how I was doing and she always thought of ways to make me fell good even though I am sick. That is also important because she motivates me whenever I need motivation.

Hope was the most important thing I needed that week because I knew that if I stayed optimistic and I couldn’t be miserable or I would never be set free. Sooner or later I would be out of there and everything would go back to the way it was in the first place. Even though I was still sick inside, I was feeling better emotionally. I taught myself a little life lesson. My mom would tell me the exact same thing and I was happy because in a situation like this one I was able to help myself.

By the end of the week I was finally out of there and everything was normal. I could not have been any happier than I was that summer. It felt so good to be back with my friends and not sick anymore. Being back in my bunk with my counselors and being away form Gladys. Being able to go to meals with my bunk and not need to have my meals brought to me every day. It was all amazing. This is what camp was all about. Not sitting in the infirmary having a temperature of 104 degrees. Even though I was sick that summer, I think that was my best summer at camp Kennybrook (somehow).

Love and hope is what I believe in and I am sure that if you believed in them, you will be very successful in life. This I believe.