Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Akhi Moni : A brave journey

and from scrubbing and combing and amber,
from ancient scruples and from jasmine,
emerges the child, cleaner than ever,
running from the mother’s arms
to clamber again on its whirlwind,
to look for mud, oil, and ink,
to hurt itself, tumble about on the stones.
In that way, newly washed, the child leaps into life:

To wash a child: Pablo Neruda

Her name is Akhi Moni. She lives in the northern corner of Bangladesh in the district called Lalmonirhat. Due to complications during pregnancy Akhi was born with both of her hands being paralyzed. Now at the age of eight she can do everything by herself. Her physical disability doesn’t stop her from going to school, from playing with other children of her age, it couldn’t even stop her from drawing parrots and red chilli. Among five brothers and sisters Akhi is the youngest. After meeting Akhi my preconceived idea about disability changed. I have learned that though there are limitations in her life, there are also aspirations for a journey ahead.. a journey to discover one’s own abilities, dreams one intends to fulfill, hopes one has and meaning of one’s life in this world. Akhi is on her way through this journey, and she is brave though there are many twist and turns along the path she is going through.