Good Grief Camp Mentor Makes Her Mark
Author: Stephanie Webb
I've been volunteering with TAPS for about five years, and I just keep coming back! I love all my mentees and could share memories about every one of them.
One of my favorite memories involves my mentee "Kitty." I met Kitty at the TAPS Denver Good Grief Camp back in March 2015; she and I clicked almost immediately. We ran around, hula-hooped, shared secrets, created Play-Doh snakes, sang with Anna and Elsa and danced the night away. Often times, I'd give her piggyback rides and then she'd run away and try to sneak up on me. It was such a fun time!
I thought she'd forget me after our short weekend together, but while I was in D.C. for the TAPS National Good Grief Camp just a couple months later, there was Kitty. She tried to sneak up on me to no avail and said, "Stephanie! I'm so happy to see you!" and in that moment, I felt like I had made a mark on her life and that I mattered enough to be snuck up on (again). It's little moments like this that make the experience of being a TAPS Good Grief Camp Mentor worth it.
So when I think of what being a TAPS Good Grief Camp Mentor means to me, a myriad of thoughts and words come to mind; incredible, heartwarming, fulfilling and, of course, life-changing. There's something about being around these kids that just changes so much about your outlook on life. Bad days, thoughts of failure, the stress of coping with loss – it all goes away when I see these kids and the strength they have. Their resilience, whether they're aware of it or not, is indescribable. I always look forward to spending time with these kids at the next event. They change my life every time.
From the pen of...
Stephanie Webb is a captain in the U.S. Air Force and a Good Grief Camp Mentor for TAPS.