Hi! And how are you all? It has been a very hectic last two weeks with the Christmas and New Year holidays and the customary merry making and open houses. I am not complaining though. After all this is part of being a ‘typical Malaysian’ and it was a good break from training. As I go through this festive period however, I also can’t help but feel sorry for the unfortunate people who were affected by the floods especially in Johor and Malacca. I pray that they will have the courage to overcome and prevail over this challenge thrown to them by nature.
And on that note, this month I want to highlight the heartwarming story of a courageous boy, 12 year old Pratish in Malacca as reported in the Star newspaper on 21 Nov 2006. M. Pratish does not attend school regularly like his peers, as he has brittle bones (bones that break easily), a condition known as Osteogenesis Imperfecta. Most of the time, Pratish is either recuperating at the hospital or at home, such that last year he only attended three months of classes.
Mohan and Saraswathy helping Pratish into the wheelchair at home.
Everyday without fail, his policeman father, Mohan would carry Pratish from their third-floor flat into the car. His mother, Saraswathy would then drive and stay with him the whole day at school, tending to all his physical and emotional needs. Whenever Pratish is not able to attend school, his mother would call up his classmates to find out details about homework, and once finished, his father would send it to school.
What is amazing about Pratish is that in spite of his condition and the challenging circumstances, he scored 5As in the last UPSR examinations!! His ambition is to be a doctor. As he says quote, “I want to help others”. Obviously, his parents are very proud of him. His father recalls an incident when he was younger when Pratish asked his parents “Why am I born like this?” His father replied “Because you are a special child born to special parents.” After that he has never asked that question again.
I can’t help but admire this gritty boy and his wonderful parents. He is truly a special child and his parents are also special for making these sacrifices so that Pratish can lead a normal life. There are many lessons that we can surely learn from this real life story.
Lesson 1. Life is how we make it out to be. Pratish and his parents get on with life and do their best, in spite of his physical condition. They don’t complain and whine, although they have very many reasons to do so. In life, the easiest thing to do is to find excuses to justify all your problems and lack of success. And once you start adopting this attitude, it becomes a self fulfilling prophecy i.e. you start believing whatever you say and think, which perpetuates the whole problem. Life is never fair and Pratish and his parents understand it; they just carry on irrespective!
Lesson 2. Have an attitude of gratitude. Whenever we complain about life and think that god and life is unfair to us, think about people like Pratish. We complain about having only a Kancil car, when there are people who do not even have a bicycle; we complain about paying income tax, when there are people who don’t have jobs; we complain about lack of time to go for a jog, when there are people like Pratish who would do anything to be able to do it. Be thankful for whatever you have in life; in the end it is all relative.
Lesson 3. We all have a greater potential in life than we realize. If we all had a positive attitude, we would be able to unleash so much more of our potential. Think of Pratish, in spite of only attending 3 months of school, he still managed to score 5 As in his UPSR examination, an astonishing feat indeed! Imagine what all of us could achieve if we were able to inculcate a positive attitude about life and more importantly about ourselves!
Thank you very much for taking the time to read this. I really do hope that you will reflect on what has been written above, and take measures to improve yourself and importantly about the way you think. A change in thinking can certainly change the way you view your life!! Until my next newsletter, Happy New Year and may 2007 bring all of you success, happiness and good health. Take care.