PALSY …not a FALLACY..!!

MY UNDERSTANDING OF MENTALLY CHALLENGED WORLD STARTED IN A NIGHT..

HOW???…A casual chat turned an intensive friendship and a lifelong kinship with a friend, who is a father of two autistic children, and another situation, a boy who turned my life upside down with his intelligence and his spectrum of understanding of my limited knowledge.

Yes… I am shameless in agreeing that I don’t know much about AUTISM/Cerebral Palcy/microchphaly and other medically termed slight to severe mental retardations and rehabilitation programs .. Never cared..Not much bothered… Fighting my own abilities and disabilities…

 

  • When I started talking to a friend in Hyderabad, initially the talk was normal, his life and my life.. his interests and mine too.. he was so enthusiastic to show his house and family to me.. I thought what’s big deal.. Chalo..he must be loving his family too much.. I said “yes” and I saw them in a modest middle class family.. Cute mother and two sons..Something around 14-16 in ages then.. Now you must be thinking again I slipped into story mode.. But.. Just the sons were little different and special. I was taken aback and didn’t dare to ask him.
  • All I could ask him is..” are they twins??” he happily said No.. and then said..Yes they are special.. What I don’t know about an individual I have been talking and taking guidance regarding stocks and investments.. is father of two special children..two autistic children and took a voluntary retirement from the public sector establishment he has been working.. and settled in Hyderabad and invested all of his money and collected friends and set up a school and hostel for Hyderabad’s First Parents Association of Mentally Handicapped.
  • I am spell-bound and my eyes moistened at the dedication of parents. That organization which is started small by my friend and now philosopher and guide Mr. E.V. Ramesh Chander and Mrs. E.R.Nirmala is housing 100+ kids and with full involvement of their parents and only parents.. please check www.pamencap.in and their initiative for Mentally Retarded and Aged persons at www.yogsan.in ( which is a residential care for mentally challenged children & aged)
  • What makes a person a person.. ? This is a million dollar question all the time to me? When we wake up to situations and when we will accept them..? for this my friend ..Simply says.. “I was shocked to have two children with this challenges.. Not twins..Two years gap between them..! I consoled myself and my wife..Saying that..They are special to us.. God’s gift.. MOST IMPORTANT THEY WILL ALWAYS BE COMPASSIONATE AND LOVING TO US.. UNLIKE OTHER CHILDREN..WHO HAVE ANOTHER WORLD..!”
  • He started building environment around them… Collected parents who are suffering with similar children. Together they formed PAMENCAP in 1986 and just this year the organization completed 25 years.
  • He recalls his journey… many people thinking he was crazy to leave a well paid government job.. Relocating to Hyderabad. He shrugs it off… the pain of turning an organization into a complete parent involved organization and care for 100 children and families.
  • It’s an entire emotional journey when I visited them as part of my study tour in 2007. I am just grounded and elevated to another level as human being. Never in my life, was I so totally loved by relative strangers. But they are not strangers to me. They are my special, artistic family.

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The above is picture by a lovely kid…my gift.. Still I treasure.. When I am coming back after meeting all the children. Yogesh came and gave me a small teddy bear… I said “thank you” I know I will cry if I say more.. When I am almost reaching my car with the support of my driver and Anand..A child adult came and silently slipped a packet in my hand… “See later…I made it!!” the pride in his face is something I can’t either write but just feel… my eyes already drizzling after seeing such love.. I opened the pocket… they are handmade candles done in their self-employment unit. My driver couldn’t comprehend why I am smiling with teary eyes….Anand never wanted to stop me..

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  • WHY I AM SMILING WITH TEARS.. UNLESS WE MEET REAL SPECIAL CHILDREN…WE DON’T KNOW AND REALLY UNDERSTAND WHAT REAL LOVE IS AND HOW IT SHOULD BE DISPLAYED ALSO!!

 

  • Says Mrs. Shilpa Vakkantham, a woman and writer who casually visited the PAMENCAP organization simply for a reason that it’s close to her office, being an MBA graduate..just to check whether she can help the organization in any way.. If I have to write her words here.. they go like this.. “These people are very best in offering their pure love and affection. I challenge, now a days you can never come across this kind of pure love.   I use to visit them frequently whenever I get some time, and now I started taking out some time utterly to spend with these children. After many interactions now I feel that they are very rare and they added extra to ordinary. Now I never feel that they are disabled. I also learned that they can understand our moods and shares our feelings too. I learned many things from them; they help each other in all aspects. The child never feels that he/she is also disabled when they are offering help to their friends. I really surprised to see this kind of attitude in them. The unity among them is commendable. They treat everyone with same love and warmth. 

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  • She Re-affirms what is the essential requirement in a person to work in this field- “No doubt the most important thing while dealing with these children is patience. Abundant patience is required to deal with them. Every child has some inherent qualities that may be ignored by their families because of their health (physical condition or mental condition)  If we are able to recognize their interests and encourage them towards that no doubt these children also make wonders. Little co operation and encouragement will boost up their confidence and sure that “they will challenge the Nature with their nature”.  Not only that, proper guidance may show them way to earn their livelihood which is the largest part.”
  • She clears in scenario with lot of love towards the children in her voice.. Assertively.. “Parents and other people who are living with them are requested not to think that it is their sin that they have a child like this, most of the children are neglected by these kind of thoughts and they have been giving least preference and making them more physically and mentally down. My words may hurt few parents, because it is very easy to say, put into practice is very difficult. After all these children also born in the same society. Where, they also have right to live liberally and lead their lives. Hats off to the parents and teachers who are dedicating their lives to bring up these children” – This coming from a woman who loves 100 children daily as a sister, mother, and friend. They are not her biological children. If a woman can do that…Why can’t we match her in the affection??
  • Further states Mr. Ramesh Chander- narrating an incident where an IAS (Indian Administrative Service) Officer and his wife, were denied to see another families newly born child. For the simple reason that the former’s grand child is a mentally retarded and as the family sinned they are not good omen..!!
  • I recall another situation, a family in our locality closed two of their mentally retarded children under lock and key for a period of twenty years. The girl is never allowed outside, the boy with a guard always with him. THE FAMILY RUNS EDUCATIONAL INSTITUTIONS WORTH CRORES OF RUPEES.
  • Yes… you are right, we are in 2012, where educated fools roam around as most sophisticated persons of the society. I was just livid listening this, imagine what might have happened on the grieving person.

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MANY OF YOU.. KNOW WHAT I AM SAYING.. HAVE ENCOUNTERED MENTAL RETARDATION EITHER IN CHILDREN OR ADULTS IN NEAR PROXIMITY.. ATLEAST HAVE SEEN THEM..

NEXT TIME WHEN YOU SEE.. TRY TO TAKE SOMETIME AND ENTER THEIR WORLD.. GIVE THEM JUST A SMILE OF UNDERSTANDING.. YOU WILL BE BLESSED WITH UNCONDITIONAL LOVE (FOR WHICH YOU MIGHT BE YEARNING LIKE ANYTHING..!!)

HAVE A HAPPY WORLD CEREBRAL PALCY DAY…!!

 

SPECIAL THANKS TO YOGESH, SANTOSH,NIRMALA AUNTY, RAMESH UNCLE, SHILPA AND 100 ADULTS WITH KID AND KIND HEARTS.. YOU MADE MY DAY AND LIFE..!!

© Sai Padma IPR:// All Rights Reserved

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