Divya came back from school and without even changing, she settled down next to her mother. With big tears floating in her lovely eye, she said, ‘I must have the latest Lady Bird cycle Mammas. All my friends have it, except me.” Aruna lovingly took her daughter close and tried to reason with her. “My dear, you already have one and it is not so old either, don’t you?” “yes, but ….”Divya tried to explain, but her tears just wouldn’t be stop. The little girl was quite dejected with her mother’s reaction to her demand for a cycle. She thought, “Mother is really mean. Am I asking for too much? It’s only a cycle.” That night, she fell asleep thinking about nothing else.
The next day was a Sunday. Aruna woke up Divya quite early and got her ready. She did not want to give Divya much time to think about what was going on. Nikhil, Divya’s father, was waiting for them in the car. The three enjoyed the ride and before long, they came to huge mansion. Within moments, a lovely lady?” Divya felt so shy, she hid behind her mother. Aruna greeted Mrs. Dilip with great warmth and affection.
Mrs. Dilip then took the three to a hall where there were about 50 children sitting in rows. Most of them were of around Divya’s age but some were as small as a year old. Two assistants were giving the children breakfast. Divya looked at her mother wondering where they had come. Aruna told her, “Divya, this is bal bhavan, an orphanage run by Mrs. Dilip. The children, you notice, are those whose parents either have abandoned them or have expired.” Divya couldn’t take her eyes off the children who were having their breakfast without a fuss. She remembered how she troubled her mother every morning at the breakfast table.
Later, Aruna and Divya walked around the orphanage. At the recreation room, Divya asked her mother, “Mamma, doesn’t each child own a toy?” just the question Aruna was waiting to hear! She said, “Divya, the children who live here are a little unfortunate. They are however lucky to be living in a place like the Bal bhavan. Sensitive and kind people like Mrs. Dilip are able to take care of their basic needs like food, clothing and shelter but orphanages usually do not have big funds for each child to own a toy.” Aruna continued, “We must learn to be thankful for whatever we have and moreover, be a little sensitive to the ones less fortunate than us by giving whatever little we can.”
A month went by. Divya’s class teacher called up Aruna and congratulated her on having raised such a sensitive and thoughtful child. Divya had spoken to her class about her trip to the Bal bhavan. All the children had collected almost three big cartons full of toys and storybooks to be gifted to their young friends at Bal bhavan. Aruna could not contain her tears and hugged her daughter when she came home.
Morel: Teach your children about how fortunate they are for what they have and develop sensitivity for other who are little unfortunate.