An Afternoon of Awakening and Inspiration - by Travis Azzuria Taher (Volunteer) At a crowded slum area in Pasar Baru, Central Jakarta, is a steep and rickety flight of stairs. Up those treacherous steps lay a narrow hallway leading into what should be a rather spacious room. Surrounded by heaps of damp clothes and belongings, a mother is seen comforting her children inside. That Thursday afternoon, I accompanied Rachel House nurses on their visit to Julian*, a 10-year old boy diagnosed with leukemia. The first thing that struck me was that despite the illness that is ravaging his body and limiting his activities, Julian still manages to find consolation in the little things life offered. A boy with simple aspirations. When asked what he’d do if everything came free of charge, he said all he would ask for is fried anchovies (teri goreng). His modest desire humbled me as it showed how the simple pleasures we take for granted can mean the world to some people. Julian is the textbook example of perseverance and sheer determination. His illness and the economic challenges of his family have not stopped him from living a joyful and eventful life. His love for spending time with his family, playing football, and watching cartoons - nothing stops a champ like him from enjoying the bliss youth afford. A black Alphard whizzed by his humble abode, posters of celebrities on the wall trembled. Envy never creeps into Julian's head. He continued to adopt a fiercely courageous and inspiring outlook on his life while living with the life-threatening illness. In today’s materialistic and self-centered world, sometimes a simple and humble view of life is refreshing. Children across the globe, many like Julian, living with chronic disease and in environment of economic distress, remaining unshaken by nihilism. On the long journey back to the office, I reflected on the time I spent with Julian. While the medical checkup was brief, and his mother did most of the talking, this was truly a moment of awakening for me. It offered me further insight into the parts of life we try to shut out from our minds, the ugly truth we tend to gloss over. Seeing it firsthand really moved me and touched my heart. Julian’s will to carry on with daily living in spite of his condition is an inspiration to all of us. We should all strive to be more like him. *name changed for privacy -- Join Rachel House and donate to support our cause through the GlobalGiving platform:

Posted by Rachel House at 2023-04-28 07:18:42 UTC