His name was Dhru*; he loved the ‘roaring’ bit. Dhru must be at least ten years old today, when we did “Everybody is differently beautiful”, he must’ve been 7? To think he couldn’t see his costume, had no clue what a lion’s mane was like, or even heard it roar, what a sport Dhru was. All these unknown things and he had to act as well as mime singing! But they were all game, as game can get.
I learned how to appreciate life, how to dance even if we missed a step, how to laugh out loud against all odds- from these kids who were my son’s schoolmates. The School asked if I could help out with Spoken English: oh I hinted broadly at Drama and Poetry. They didn’t get the Poetry bit, but one little girl did. She loved every poem in her braille typed book, especially the one that went, “…and Saturday’s child has to work hard for her living…”
It still breaks my heart to recall how they were taught to cross the street by themselves. Some of the older ones were actually going on crowded buses and getting off alone, cheerfully unafraid.
“They must learn….how else will they face life?” Their Daily Living Skills teacher asked me.
Sometimes I wish our own Joh weren’t as independent as he is. I wish he were less self reliant, I wish our kids didn’t need to grow up in a world that knows how to take advantage of the ‘disadvantaged’. I wish our roads were safer. But then am proud of every young /older challenged person or otherwise who can “work hard” at whatever Life gives them.
Thankyou young Dhru for reminding me today of people like you who still teach me to be brave and beautiful, no matter what.