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Personal Narrative: Unfamiliarity

explanatory Essay
496 words
496 words
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Unfamiliarity, in the broadest sense, can evoke a feeling of fear or anxiety. However, my unique cultural upbringing has made me comfortable with unfamiliarity, and eager to embrace differences among people with compassion and tolerance. I am the product of a cultural infusion—I was born in the United Kingdom to an English father, but was influenced by the Turkish customs of my mother. While living in England, I grew up eating dinner on the floor, listening to Turkish music on the radio, and waking up to a poster of Kemal Ataturk. I spent every summer living in Turkey where I learned the language, saw the way different people lived, and became familiar with the practices of Islam. At 14 years old I was immersed in yet another culture when I …show more content…

In this essay, the author

  • Explains that their unique cultural upbringing has made them comfortable with unfamiliarity, and eager to embrace differences among people with compassion and tolerance.
  • Describes how they offer a keen sense of empathy to the class. they comforted and stayed by the woman's side until she stopped crying.
  • Explains that they believe their biggest asset is their openness and willingness to learn.

This sense of care was called upon when a woman grabbed my arm to ask “My dad is going to be ok isn’t he?” while I was scribing in the Good Samaritan hospital. The 78 year old father was suspected of having a heart attack, but I had to ease her worry. “Yes he is going to be okay. The doctor thinks he is having a heart attack, but…” and at that point she started crying. I took ahold of her hand, and gave it a warm squeeze. I knew, from when my mother had cancer, that the unknown outcome of a loved one evokes a horrible sense of worry and fear. She needed reassurance that her dad will be ok. While her tearful eyes looked at me, I comforted and stayed by her side until she stopped crying. The woman thanked me and hugged me tight. I wasn’t sure what to do, but I tried to put myself in her shoes to ease her worry and guilt. I believe my biggest asset is my openness and willingness to learn. There is a Buddhist concept called the ‘beginner’s mind’ in which one maintains a sense of openness and abandonment of preconceptions in order to learn as much as possible from a given situation. A beginner enters a moment knowing that he can learn a lot, but an expert has less opportunity because he thinks he knows it all. I work hard to always maintain a beginner’s mind, because I want to learn as much as possible in each

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