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Mrs Jenny C. Clapp

Clinical Professor

Mrs Jenny C. Clapp

The Little Match Girl
by Hans Christian Andersen

This was the very first book I can remember reading and it was the first book I ever checked out from the library at my little elementary school. I was raised in a wonderful family that taught me by their words and actions about compassion for others who were more unfortunate than me. But as a little girl myself reading the tender story of The Little Match Girl, I remember being moved to deep emotions in a way deeper than what I had seen in "real life". I was not much older than the little girl in the story and I wanted to somehow protect and care for her so much, I actually kept the book and did not return it to the library by the end of the year. I felt somehow if I kept the book I could keep her from any more hunger, poverty and cold. My mom eventually found the book and when I told her through my tears what my intention had been, of course I promptly returned the book and looked forward to the day when I could have my own copy. Now as an adult with a family of my own and as a nurse caring for those less fortunate than myself, I know part of the tenderness in my heart came from being touched by the story of the sweet little girl who died hungry and cold, dreaming of a better place.