Third World Experience Gives a New Perspective

New PerspectiveMy name is Cassie and I am 17 years old. Moving has always been a big part of my life. Moving for me has always meant change, adaptation and the unknown. I am not a fan of change and so moving has always been very hard for me. When I was 11 years old, we moved to Singapore, Asia, a tiny island on the southern tip of Malaysia. It was a very unique experience, yes! But also very hard to live in a foreign place and adapt to a new culture. It was very hot and humid, very different from the dry weather we were used to. For the first couple of months we lived in temporary housing in the middle of the large city. It was pretty cramped with our large family and we didn’t have a washer/dryer or dishwasher. Eventually, we moved to a house on the other side of the island next to the American school. It was a very narrow, three-story house with no carpet- only tile and wood! There was no front or backyard and I was terrified of the gross geckos that covered the walls. I can’t say that I enjoyed living there but the travel that we did was amazing! I got to go to Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, Cambodia, Hong Kong, and Australia!! We did lots of fun things and I saw many things that I had never thought about before. For the first time in my young life, I saw extreme poverty. Seeing people live in cardboard boxes with no food and no clothes made me realize how much I had. I gained a perspective that most people do not get the privilege of receiving. I was humbled by the happiness and kindness of people living in third world countries even though they had nothing. We were able to volunteer and donate supplies to orphanages in Malaysia and Cambodia. One experience I had will always stay with me. I got to take a trip to Cambodia with my grandma and mom. We brought several bags of clothes with us, donated by friends and relatives, to pass out at an orphanage. We gave an outfit to a little girl, who was probably about eight or nine years old. She was so happy because she had no other clothes besides the ones on her back. After passing out all the clothes, we rode in a van to take some orphans back to the orphanage. The little girl came with us and sat in the back. On the ride there, she tapped me on the shoulder and asked me something. We didn’t speak the same language so our guide translated for me. She wanted to know if she could trade her outfit for a wooden, school pencil because she had never owned one in her life. We gladly gave her the pencil and let her keep her outfit. She said thank you over and over again until she got out of the van. We then watched as she handed her outfit to another little girl who had not received any clothes. This experience was such an eye opener to me! All this little girl wanted was a pencil, something that we all take for granted. And she gave away her precious clothes to someone else even though she really needed them. It made me so grateful for what I have and appreciate how great life is! After living in Asia for two years, we moved back to the United States to the same house we had moved from. Two years later, after my ninth grade year we moved again. I was not happy about moving again and I did not want to leave the friends I had grown up with. But I know that the place I am now is where I am supposed to be!! I absolutely LOVE my school and have an amazing group of friends! Although moving has been a challenge in my life, I am grateful for it. I have met so many people from everywhere and have had some great adventures! I know that God knows me and knows where I’m supposed to be. And through Him I have accomplished many things and I am so grateful for the experiences that I have had!

Story written by: Cassie

This story appeared first on Real Imprints.