My Experience of Overcoming Adversity: Personal Narrative Essay

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When I was in first grade, I would often go to I used to go to a family friend’s house every week and play with their sons who were a few years younger than me. I found our games fun, but I could tell that the older boy was a bit rowdier and his mother had difficulty handling him. I remember one time when my mom came to pick me up from their house and she brought my dog along. Camillo kept pulling at his fur and jumping on him when I asked him to stop. I began to cry, and I was angry at Camillo for how he acted. While I was walking home that night, I realized that Camillo was different from other children I knew and I had to be mindful of that fact.

A few months ago Kaitlyn asked me to babysit Camillo for a few days. I would come to their apartment every day at 9 a.m. and leave at about 4 p.m. for three days. As I prepared to babysit Camillo, I kept in mind that babysitting Camillo would be a bit more difficult than other babysitting jobs I had been given. I went through and made sure I had all the important contacts and emergency phone numbers. However, I also thought about what activities I would incorporate into the time Camillo and I were spending together. I recall that on my first day, I came into the apartment and received a warm welcome from Camillo’s parents. Unfortunately, despite their efforts, Camillo’s parents were unable to get Camillo to say hello to me or even give me a wave. Throughout those three days, I tried to find ways to connect with Camillo through his love for science and engineering. He loved to draw models of rockets and planes and space stations, but this was not my area of expertise. This was another very difficult part of this job and I didn’t exactly know how to connect with Camillo. Partway through my time babysitting Camillo, I discovered that Camillo’s behavior was a result of his autism. Learning this explained a number of incidents. For example, taking him to a cafe where he constantly banged all the silverware on the table, or how he needed to be explained the appropriate responses to say to sound polite. It explained why he hugged you just a little bit too tight and needed a signal for when it was a good time to let go. Even when I learned this, it was still difficult for me to fully understand Camillo, and for him to fully understand me. I struggled to find him a reasonable lunch because he decided against almost all of my offers that most nine-year-old children would enjoy, and I also struggled to take authority without upsetting him.

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This experience has changed me and opened me up to a new kind of responsibility and leadership. I will never forget the challenges I faced and the choices I made to overcome them. As a result, I overcame this adversity. I learned to take charge in an unfamiliar situation and to believe in myself and my capabilities. I managed to connect with Camillo despite how much I didn’t understand him, and I even had fun along the way.

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My Experience of Overcoming Adversity: Personal Narrative Essay. (2024, February 09). Edubirdie. Retrieved July 15, 2024, from
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