I promise her I will pack my troubles and be more committed

Regina Afanwi Young
Posted October 25, 2020 from Cameroon

International day of the girl child is always a special day for my daughter  Therese and I especially being my only daughter. She is always sure she would get some goodies from me and then we some girls talks. I always allow her choose what we will talk on. 

This year was different. Two days before then she had come home telling me about a little girl with disabilities in another neighborhood but close to mine whom they were planning to visit in their church group . she urged me to go pay her a visit as she had heard the neighbors were keeping away from that home. 

Note that we come from an area were there are still terrible myth surrounding persons with disabilities especially those with cerebral palsy. My first son lives with a disability though not cerebral palsy. I have experienced it and I know how painful it could be.

Honestly I have been feeling sick from hard work and the trauma of my husband still locked up.

I decided I pay her a visit and also bring her some covid19 kits. What a remarkable day it turned out to be. What a brilliant way of celebrating the international day of the girl child.

When I got to her home. I met her wheel chair empty at the corridor. My heart melted. I called out and her dad responded. I introduced myself and asked to see her. 

He said she was in bed because some children came teasing her and she fell off her wheel chair. I tried so hard to hold back tears to no avail. I begged him to bring her out so we could spend some quality. He was skeptical but then heeled to my demand. It is only later during our conversation that I discovered that he was sceptical because no one had visited her in a very long while.

When she came out I came closer to her, greeted her and introduced myself. She gave me a smile. That is the smile I needed all this while. I could read in her eyes that she was saying " pack up your troubles Regina, regain your strength and go out there. There are so many persons with disabilities who need your love, care and services"

She kept smiling from time to time as I told her stories and also tried suggesting and discussing with her father on some possible services she could benefit from. Her father was so happy to see her daughter smile. He said he had never seen her so happy. No visitor has ever sat near her to talk with her. They always talk at a distance.

At the end of the visit her father confessed they always attended to her in a rush and don't even ask her opinion or explain anything to her they thought she wouldn't understand. He said it was a learning process for him.

To me it was a day well celebrated. It was a success story to me especially as I changed the perception of a whole household of 9 persons on their own child with disability apart from giving the girl herself some joy.

Since then i have regained my strength . I have attended trainings and Workshops aimed at empowering these Vulnerable persons  which I will be sharing subsequently all thanks to this  little girl . She reawakened the hard working spirit in me .

i will be visiting her again with my daughter as she has been saving her school launch to get her little present for her.




This story was submitted in response to My Voice, Our Equal Future.

Comments 10

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Oct 25
Oct 25

Hello sister regina,how are you there?
Bravo you have certainly left a good mark on the child’s family and others will learn from them.
I have shed tears of joy for the victory of being able to change the negative attitude that exists for many parents or guardians on disabilities,many are hidden by believing in cultural myths, I once did so by persuading the parents of Namiungo ward to send back to schools all with cerebral palsy as their school was nearby they responded well so far they are studying, changing from isolation and being around the community playing and having fun together.

Regina Afanwi Young
Nov 12
Nov 12

Thanks Valem dear. Yes acceptance starts from the home. It sets the foundation of being accepted in the community.
Good job on your efforts at Namiungo ward. Keep shining my dear.

Jill Langhus
Oct 26
Oct 26

Aw, what a sweet story, dear Regina. Thanks so much for sharing. It really conveyed how sweet you and your daughter, Therese are. What is the girl's name? How old is she? Poor thing. You literally are the light of her life now. :-) Keep up the great work, and please keep us posted on her progress, dear. XX

Regina Afanwi Young
Nov 12
Nov 12

Thanks beloved Jill for your kind words. Am sorry am responding this late.
Her name is Ngum Precious and she is twelve years old.
Yes I will do. Thank you Jill
Love, Regina

I appreciate that.

Jill Langhus
Nov 13
Nov 13

Hello Love,

No worries, dear. I know you're really busy.

Thanks for telling me more about dear, Precious. I hope to see more updates about her, thriving under your care:-)

You're welcome. XX

Hello, dear Regina,

Oh my, my tears are falling as I read this post. What a lovely way to celebrate The International Day of The Girl. You reached out to a little girl and made her feel seen, heard, and valued. What a gift you did for her! You are raising Therese well. Oh what a dear daughter to tell you to visit this child. I am so inspired, dear. My tears are falling.haha.

I do know the pain of raising a child with special needs/disabilities. Children who don't understand tease my son, too. Luckily, my son doesn't get it, but it pierces my heart every time when he is looked down and laughed at. It's a tough world out there, that's why it takes a lot of courage to care.

Thank you for doing what you do. What a lovely unspoken message that visit was, " Pack up your troubles Regina, regain your strength and go out there. There are so many persons with disabilities who need your love, care and services". Praying for you, dear. Hugs.

Regina Afanwi Young
Nov 12
Nov 12

Hello my beloved sister in Christ Karen. Am sorry am responding to your comment late. Thank you for all the beautiful expressions. I couldn't think of a better way of celebrating the international day of the girl child. I always love to make a difference.
Am so proud of your son. He must be a strong boy not to notice any teasing.
My dear as a mother it is normal to feel hurt. I fully understand you especially as my first son is autistic and is being teased and laughted at. I have taught him to be strong and I use any given opportunity to educate who ever teases him.
Yes Therese is an adorable little girl. Am training her to grow up into a compassionate woman and so I get her involve in my work at the least opportunity.
Trying hard by the grace of God to live the silent words of that little girl (Ngum Precious)
Thanks my sister for always praying for me.
Hugs to your family

Nini Mappo
Oct 27
Oct 27

Hello Regina,
What a beautiful story of love and care and joy! I can see the smiles and feel the flutter of the heart at such kindness that reminded the girls that she is a person, worthy of loce, care, recognition, and whose ideas need to be valued. Wow, you not only brought love and Covid-19 kits, but also a pair of new 'glasses' though which this family should view disability, even beyond their family.
Well done to you and Therese, especially on reaching out to comfort others while you could do with comfort yourself. How lovely that you were strengthened by the interaction!
God bless you and keep filling you with strength and resourcing you with all that you need to serve your community.
Love, hugs, and sparkles :)

Nov 03
Nov 03

That is so kind of you. This family and especially the child will never forget such acts of kindness. May the Lord continue providing for you much more so that you become a blessing to many others. I have read this and it has touched my heart.

Steph L
Nov 23
Nov 23

Hi Regina, your girl and you have such a big heart! Great parenting skill too.
Wishing you all the best for you, your health, your family and that you are stronger than the trauma!