Work is going great.... I'm learning so much! The long days are filled with abundant opportunities to learn and I feel as if I simply can never take in enough knowledge in a given day. I am truly grateful to AAPD (and the sponsors who fund this program) for providing me with the springboard needed to get my career off to a great start. The Washington, DC experience (filled with networking and hands-on opportunities, as well as time for introspection) has been rather positive overall.
In addition to work, we have also been provided with great opportunities to continue to grow in knowledge and understanding of the disability rights movement. The highlight of the week (for me) was when we had the opportunity to visit the FDR Memorial. I've always loved history and looking back at what helped form the greatest power in the world. Similarly, I've always been fascinated with many of the great things we have accomplished in this country. Our tour of the FDR Memorial helped to reaffirm the fact that no matter what struggle we face in this great country, we will overcome!
My two favorite Presidents this country has ever had are: JFK and FDR. Both were rather remarkable individuals! While Kennedy's service to this country was cut short, there were many lessons learned during his Presidency. Conversely, Roosevelt's service is at the complete opposite end of the spectrum. Former President Franklin Roosevelt (FDR) was the only President ever to serve (4) terms, quite an amazing feat in and of itself-not to mention the tough times in this country and personal struggles he faced. Through it all, FDR persisted- he overcame, he continued to move forward as an individual and help the conutry move forward as a whole. In my mind, it is actually quite similar to what each intern in this program has had to do at one point in life- persevere and overcome obstacles presented by their respective disability.
There was a quote I made sure to write down while at the memorial.... A quote that inspired me personally. The quote by Eleanor Roosevelt spoke to me and many of the experiences I've had in life. Mrs. Roosevelt said, "Franklin's illness... gave him strength and courage he had not had before. He had to think out the fundamentals of living and learn the greatest of all lessons-infinite patience and never-ending persistence." Something for all of us to think about....