Charles Robert Shaffer aka Pinky Penmark Chimes in On His/Her Life-Changing Volunteer Experiences.
Back in my twenty something years, I often felt isolated from the world, alone and without a connection to those around me. I questioned my purpose in the world and the meaning of life regularly. A miracle happened somewhere around my 28th year, as it does for many about that age I suspect, because I suddenly, truly felt adult, and I recognized that we are on a journey and it's a long game.
I refer to this period in my life as the day I finally decided to leave childhood behind. I gave up my pursuit of instant gratification and embraced adulthood. I became interested in my community and became more focused on attempting to make the world a better place for everyone instead of just for me.
Soon thereafter I discovered the magic powers of volunteering. Simple acts of kindness and the offering up of my time eventually and completely changed what was important to me. Suddenly, my priorities looked a whole lot different then before. I came to understand that the world should expect things from me instead of me expecting things from the world. Volunteering has given me a relationship with not only the many wonderful people I would have never met otherwise, but more importantly, it gave me a relationship with the world.
Pictured below are two college friends and myself in 1984, the heart of our twenty somethings. On the left is my freshman college roomate Tom Miller. In the center is college gal pal Amy Schutlz (Now Amy Prather). And, on the right you will find myself in the midst of what appears to be an attempt to look like Ellen Degeneres, SMH?