Angels on Earth

Writing101 Day 6A few weeks back I decided to sign up as a volunteer for the Make-A-Wish Foundation, and during the screening/interview my supervisor noticed I was very ecstatic, ‘cause he kinda looked at me funny. In all seriousness, I knew what I was signing up for. As a ‘Wish Granting Volunteer’ I had to interact with children who I knew didn’t have a bright chance at living a long and healthy life. This fact terrified me to my core because I love children more than I love life, but the reason for my excitement was that I would be getting a chance to make them smile; that I’d get to play a tiny part in fulfilling what might be their last wish.

So, a few days later, my supervisor and I went on the hospital visits to do some “Santa Claus’ing” (figuratively).

The moment I stepped out of the car and looked at the hospital gates, I started to get this sinking feeling in my heart. I realized I’m about to see my worst nightmare in front of my eyes (as seeing children in suffering really is my worst nightmare). I took some deep breaths, shook my arms to loosen up, put on my brave/energetic face and repeated to myself, “Let’s do this.”

Ahmed (my supervisor) met me at the reception and led me to the children’s ward. Now let me tell you, I was expecting a grim scenario, because that day’s task was to meet up with thalassemic children whose blood transfusions were taking place. But the second I entered the ward I got this confused look on my face. Ahmed noticed it and smiled while he handed me the ‘Wish Forms’.

“You get the 5 year olds, coz I wanna see how well you do with the shy ones. Well, go on then, get to work.”

What is it with children with life-threatening diseases? How are they gifted with this pure sense of optimism that we adults fail to see in life? Believe me when I say this: not ONE child had a sad face in that room. Not one! They were on their beds with IVs stuck in their arms and someone else’s blood being pumped into their veins, but man that ward was filled with such positive energy!

No one knew who I was and why I was visiting (the children aren’t told in advance otherwise their parents might influence their “wish”) but which ever child I approached, they welcomed me with such a beautiful beaming smile their face lit up like a thousand splendid suns (no not the Khalid Hussaini book.)

When I held their tiny, delicate hand, it moved me to the brink of tears but the spark in their magnificent little eyes made me rethink my own approach towards life. I asked myself, “I live a life that a billion people would envy, and I sometimes feel depressed? Depression my ass. The next time I feel bad about my life I’ll probably hit myself really hard in the head, with a hammer.

Maybe it was my observable excitement or maybe I just have a funny face because every child giggled when I met them. I mean come on, our introduction wasn’t our names, it was a “Hi” and 15 seconds of smiling and constant giggling at each other 😀 Imagine if we all human beings started to greet each other this way; the world won’t seem like such a bad place anymore, would it? 😛

Haha, anyway, I asked each child the usual questions:

What’s your favorite color? Your favorite food? Your favorite movie/actor/song/musician/tv show? Your favorite games? Your favorite pass-time? What do you want to be when you grow up? What do you want the most in the world? If you could go anyplace in the world where would you wanna go? Is there any favorite personality you want to meet?

Yes, of course they were physically weak and pale, and they had such tiny voices, but they still answered with such vigor and enthusiasm! They never lost eye contact with me, not even for a second, and that’s a big thing for a child their age. I haven’t seen such confident five year olds ever in my life. As for their “Wish to Be” desires, they have really big dreams I tell ya 🙂 Someone wanted to be a pilot (“I wanna travel the world”), an army officer (“I want to live and die for my country”), a doctor (“I want to get myself and everyone else healthy so that Mama and Papa become happy”).

I approached another child who had been staring at me for a while now. He was a handsome little fella with blue eyes. He kept fidgeting his arm (the one with the IV) and I had to call the nurse to help him with it. When the problem was fixed, I sat down with him and he began chewing his lip. I understood he was being nervous.

“You get nervous around pretty girls, don’t you?” I asked him with a wink.

He smiled shyly at me and said, “No, pretty girls get nervous around me.

I gotta hand it to him, he was my favorite one that day 😀

You’re a little too naughty for your age.” I lightly pinched his cheek. “So tell me, what to do want to be when you grow up?

“I wanna be a helicopter.”

I laughed and asked him “You mean a pilot?” to which he replied, “No, a helicopter. You know the one with the fan-like wings? They are cool, big, strong and I want to be one and fly as high as I can.”

I had to tell him that being a helicopter won’t be a feasible option FOR NOW, maybe it’s possible in the future, so is there anything else you’d wanna be?

To which he answered, “Fine, I want to be an engineer so that I can build a helicopter and then fly it. Being an engineer will be boring but you have to promise me you’ll come fly with me. Will you?” He looked at me with his eyebrows raised and a mischievous smile on his face.

I was quite charmed I tell you. All I could do was laugh heartily, ruffle his hair, give him a high-five and say “Oh you better count on it little buddy, I’ll be your very first customer.” And in reply his 1000 watt smile said everything 🙂

Other than the “Wish to Be” desires, these children’s “Wish to Have”, “Wish to Go” were equally inspiring. You know why? Because those weren’t big wishes at all. They didn’t want anything, because they were content with the life and things they already had. And that is something we can learn a lot from. Regardless of life handing them dried up lemons, these kids have decided to do everything in their power to stay courageous and never indulge in self-pity. I had to dig these wishes out of them because MAW can’t fulfill everyone’s “Wish to Be” desire as these are big projects and require a lot of funding and support from other institutions; so we have to sometimes make do with fulfilling their wish to have something special.

Later when I was done with the forms, Ahmed came to me and said:

“What’s up with you and these kids? I never get such a warm welcome, and I’ve been coming here for years.”

Well, what can I say, kids adore me ^_^

I have gone on three hospital visits and everywhere I’ve seen this same energy, optimism, and LIFE within these precious children. Nothing can bring them down. We adults aren’t role models for them, but THEY are role models for us. They truly are angels on earth, and I look forward to meet them again at the 29th of April which is the World Wish Day where we’ll get to fulfill some of the wonderful wishes of these amazing children. May they all have long, healthy and beautiful lives ahead. Amen.


Day 6 Assignment:

Who’s the most interesting person (or people) you’ve met this year?

Today, write a post focusing on one — or more — of the people that have recently entered your life, and tell us how your narratives intersected. It can be your new partner, your newborn child, or the friendly barista whose real story you’d love to learn (or imagine), or any other person you’ve met for the first time in the past year.

A lot of people have decided to do this assignment as a fictional story because honestly, how often do we get to meet interesting people? But thank God I was lucky enough to actually interact with not one but dozens of amazing people in the past one month. And yes, one final thing before I finish.

Make a Wish Foundation is one of the best Non-Profits out there; what they’re doing is a remarkable social cause, so in whichever country you live in, please donate and give your support to your local MAW establishment. These children are some of the most deserving people in the world and if your money (no matter how little the amount) can play a small role in fulfilling their life’s biggest wish, you’ll be doing a great service to humanity yourself 🙂 Thank you ❤

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39 thoughts on “Angels on Earth

    • A.B Mood April 13, 2015 / 10:01 PM

      Oh wow I feel honored Harris. 🙂 I hope and pray that we all can give back to the community and play our part in helping humanity ❤

      Like

  1. Alexus K April 13, 2015 / 4:51 PM

    Wow. Just woo. Inspiring. This makes me look at life differently as well. I have had the same opportunity to do something similar with the organization that I work for. Those children are truly inspiring and really make you rethink your outlook on life. Suddenly all of our issues seem minuscule compared to what those children are facing. Amazing and beautufily written!

    Liked by 1 person

    • A.B Mood April 13, 2015 / 10:09 PM

      Thank you so much Alexus ❤ It's wonderful you also participated in helping these beautiful children! It's been one of the most fulfilling experiences of my life :')
      By the way, did I tell you your comments also make my day ❤ 😉

      Liked by 1 person

      • Alexus K April 14, 2015 / 3:41 PM

        You didn’t but thank You! We are becoming fast friends!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. desleyjane April 13, 2015 / 5:22 PM

    How marvellous!!! What a wonderful thing to be a part of. And you have such a connection with these children, it’s wonderful! This is a great post.

    Liked by 1 person

    • A.B Mood April 13, 2015 / 10:15 PM

      Thank you so much Desley ❤ And the reason behind this connection is that I have a LOT of small children in my relatives and I'm everyone's favorite aunt/big sis 😀 So my love for kids and my strong belief in social welfare both intersected when I decided to sign up! ^_^

      Liked by 1 person

  3. miusho April 13, 2015 / 5:27 PM

    I had to read this in bits and pieces.. When it’s about kids and hospitals, I automaticly tear up. 😥

    Liked by 1 person

    • A.B Mood April 13, 2015 / 10:17 PM

      Haha oh no dear, I haven’t made this a sad/depressing read 😀 But yes I can understand because I’m also very super emotional regarding children 😦

      Liked by 1 person

  4. abyssbrain April 13, 2015 / 6:54 PM

    I remembered when I was still professionally performing magic, I would visit and perform magic to children who have leukemia and other terminal illnesses at least three times a year. Now that I don’t professionally perform anymore, I still visit them once a year.

    Every time I went there, it was always a very humbling experience since I could see the happiness and hope in the eyes of every children despite of their situations. I know many people who have good health, a good job and wealth are still not happy and content with what they have. Those children can absolutely teach them the real meaning and value of life and more…

    Btw, Make-A-Wish Foundation is one of the few nonprofit organizations that I respect. Unlike other “nonprofit” organizations which “accumulated reserve” is larger than many other profit-making organization’s, *cough, FIFA, cough*…

    Liked by 1 person

    • A.B Mood April 13, 2015 / 10:30 PM

      Exactly! During this course on Non profit Organizations in my Bachelors Program, our teacher invited a lot of NPOs to the department for a seminar and as I was already very passionate about social work in the field of education and health so I started researching on them, and believe me out of 15 only two seemed credible organizations, and one of them was M.A.W. Now that I’ve had some experience with them I know how hard they work day and night to put a smile on these beautiful children’s faces :’) The management itself is so humble and cooperative.

      By the way, it’s so wonderful that you still visit them once a year 🙂 Do you still perform some magic for them? 😉

      Liked by 1 person

      • abyssbrain April 14, 2015 / 7:03 AM

        “Nonprofit” organization is actually one of our inside jokes since we all know that it’s just a bunch of BS. The main reason is that external audits are rare in NPOs and if some auditors conduct some “audit”, they are most likely their “friends”. Also, since they are doing “good things” to the society, they seldomly encounter scrutinies from the government, regulatory bodies, media and the general public

        Yes, I still perform magic for them. Even though I don’t perform magic professionally nowadays, it doesn’t mean that I stopped performing altogether. The only reason I stopped performing professionally anyway is that I find it more enjoyable to do magic as a hobby than as a profession.

        Liked by 1 person

      • A.B Mood April 14, 2015 / 8:20 PM

        Hahaha I’m loving the sarcasm 😀 But sadly, you are a 100% correct 😦
        And you did the right thing. People start to hate their jobs eventually so it’s good you stopped before letting it come to that.
        P.S. What kind of magic did you specialize in? 😀 Actually I’ve loved magic tricks since forever!

        Liked by 1 person

      • abyssbrain April 15, 2015 / 5:26 AM

        Any auditor worth his salt understands this far better.

        I love magic too much so I don’t want to hate it in the future. If you’re a pro, you have to learn new tricks and techniques at a very fast pace, but I think that learning magic that way caused the fun of learning magic and its mysteries to lose…

        I specialized in closeup magic, you know, magic with coins, ropes, sponges and other everyday objects. Although many tricks that I know involve playing cards.

        Like

  5. andreacfrt April 13, 2015 / 8:18 PM

    I cannot believe the amount of wisdom coming from a young lady like yourself. Not many people do what you just did, its very inspiring. I really hope to do the same with my children. I want them to grow with compassion and empathy towards other human beings. There are too many spoiled, self centered people in this world and we need more people like you. Let me know how you sign up and volunteer for the makeawish foundation. I can probably just google it, huh? Thank you so much for this post and thank you so much for what you did for these children. I also used to work with breast cancer patients and although it was very depressing at times, it put my life into perceptive and made me appreciate towards life and all of my blessings. But often times we forget about how blessed and privileged we really and this post just woke me up. I should be ashamed for feeling sad or depress when I am not attached to an iv and facing a serious illness.
    You made me miss my little pumpkin who is at daycare, I just want to give her a big hug after this post.

    Liked by 1 person

    • A.B Mood April 13, 2015 / 10:41 PM

      You have no idea how much your kind words mean to me :’) I just did my duty; my duty as a human being. 🙂 And I agree, in this world, today, people just no longer give a damn about the benefit of another, and it’s a sad world to live in. But after this experience with these kids, I know that there is still hope in this world, there are still angels among us. And as for a wonderful mother like you, I’m sure your kids will grow up to be the pride of your family and community ❤

      And oh, to sign up, visit their website and select your country. There you can find online forms and also their address which you can visit yourself. 🙂 They are always very welcoming for fresh volunteers as they are always in need of a helping hand.

      And you know why your experience with the breast cancer patients was bit depressing? Because adults don't have that sense of optimism that children have. Children can still recognize all that is good in their life despite any hardships. But us adults are much weaker in this regard 😦

      Go and hug your little one and a second hug from me too ❤

      Liked by 1 person

      • andreacfrt April 14, 2015 / 1:08 AM

        Aww thanks sweetie. I wish there were more people like you. Children are the hope to humanity. I think kids are just innocent but adults have more responsibility and are more exposed to corruption. The thing about these women over going breast cancer was that although they had this dead threatening illness, their lives still went on. Problems with spouse, loosing their work, house, health insurance not covering the treatments to name a view. The world is still hard on women, imagine if you top it with that form of disease. Nevertheless, children are as you said little angels, full of hope and light.

        Like

  6. Nooryak April 13, 2015 / 8:56 PM

    So pure and simple and beautiful 🙂 made me smile so much 🙂
    gotta say i envy you right now coz this is something i have been wanting to do from a very long time now but somehow something always comes in the way.
    great great post ! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • A.B Mood April 13, 2015 / 10:45 PM

      Haha it happened to me too in the beginning. “Should I really do this? Do I have the time?” But the hesitance just lasts till sending the application form 😀 Support ANY cause you believe in, and trust me, you will love every second of it ^_^
      And thank you so much dearest for the lovely response ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Camille April 13, 2015 / 9:27 PM

    A very beautiful experience! Thank you for sharing it with us 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • A.B Mood April 13, 2015 / 10:48 PM

      Thank YOU dear for your lovely feedback ^_^ ❤

      Like

  8. taylorsiebecker April 13, 2015 / 9:52 PM

    This was such a good read! I only got to skim the beginning because I’m at work! I promise I’ll finish it later though! Great job!

    Liked by 1 person

    • A.B Mood April 13, 2015 / 10:50 PM

      Hahaha oh no problem Taylor 🙂 Thank you so much for still liking it 😀 ❤

      Like

  9. Akhiz April 13, 2015 / 11:17 PM

    wherever i read or hear the words Make a Wish foundation it fills my heart with great appreciation and admiration because they bring smiles on faces of children, that moment when you see the sudden surprise and joy on a child’s face is priceless, im honored to know a person who works with them, keep sharing the joy 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • A.B Mood April 14, 2015 / 8:05 PM

      Yes, that moment truly is priceless :’) Thanks so much Akhiz 🙂

      Like

  10. Uday April 13, 2015 / 11:33 PM

    Ah AB! You are such an inspiration! Reading this filled me with joy! What a wonderful thing to have experienced, truly. Unfortunately, kids get pretty intimidated around me :/ Have no idea why! Maybe I just need to try better.

    But what you said cannot be competed. KIDS are the ultimate bundles of optimism and contentment. There really is a life lesson for us all in them.

    Liked by 1 person

    • A.B Mood April 14, 2015 / 8:09 PM

      You know, Uday, the key to bonding with children is to become one 😀 I’ve got a lot of young cousins so I have an experience in how their behavior can be molded with just the right attitude 🙂 So whenever you interact with kids next time, try to bring out the inner child in you 😉
      And thanks so very much for the awesome feedback dear 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • Uday April 15, 2015 / 4:29 PM

        Ah right you are! Time to bring out the kid in me 😀 😀

        Liked by 1 person

  11. ninakimani11 April 14, 2015 / 1:48 AM

    That is so sweet and kind of you. Not so many people are called for voluntary job. You are such an inspiration.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. TK April 14, 2015 / 4:06 PM

    AB, your soul is just beautiful. That’s obvious from this post ❤

    All these kids want is for someone to talk to them and treat them as they are: children, not let their illness take the front seat of who they are.

    I teared up reading this because of my experiences with working in a hospital and being so hesitant at first to go survey the children's cancer wards- my opinion has long since changed. Working with them and their caregivers has truly given me a new perspective on life, similar to yours (about feeling depressed over stupid things)

    But anyway, I hope these children all go on to accomplish everything they set out to be. The story about the helicopter kid cracked me up!

    Liked by 1 person

    • A.B Mood April 14, 2015 / 9:20 PM

      Ah TK thank you so muchh :’) That’s exactly what I was saying to another friend of mine; that if you want to bond with children you have to be one 🙂 I have knack for acting like a kid around children so maybe that’s why they get so comfortable with me ^_^
      And heyy that’s wonderful you’ve had the same experience! ❤ I tell this to my family and friends that if you want to be more thankful towards the life you're given, then just go volunteer and help these kids, its the most humbling experience :')
      Thank you so much again for the lovely comment ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  13. patchworkrainbows April 14, 2015 / 11:55 PM

    A really great post. Such a wonderful way to spend your time. I know what it is like to be humbled by your job working with adults with profound multiple learning disabilities. It makes me grateful every day. They truly are incredible. X

    Liked by 1 person

    • A.B Mood April 15, 2015 / 11:30 PM

      It’s an amazing service you’re doing helping these adults :’) I’ve always wanted to work with them, help them, connect with them. I suppose my next mission will be to sign up for elder care 🙂 ❤ Thank you so much for your kindest feedback ❤

      Liked by 1 person

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