S seems to show up in our Instagram and Facebook feeds more than any other child here at Love & Hope Children’s Home. It is because of his wonderful and crazy personality, funny stories and great photos. S is so unique and special; he brings joy to all of our lives here.
S has friends all over the place. Here is a common scenario: we are walking through the grocery store with S. From behind us we hear, “Hi S!” We say “Hi!” S smiles. Then we (the adults) timidly ask, “Sorry, how do you know S?” They explain and we have an epiphany moment. Seriously, this has happened many times. Everywhere we go, S knows someone.
He also understands a lot of English. S will never respond in English, but we have to be careful about what we say in English in front of him. At times he has surprised us with his understanding.
S is a dancer. From the time he was little, he could pick out a good beat. And he isn’t ashamed to let loose and dance in front of anyone. We recently went to a wedding and S danced for about two hours straight. Really, he didn’t stop, and we were all wondering where all that energy came from. Even when it was time to eat, he sat in his seat, bouncing up and down. He didn’t care what everyone else thought, and he also got the other little boys dancing too.
One of our friends once said that S is Love & Hope’s “Welcoming Party.” So true. He is the first to greet and play with visitors, opening his heart to new people immediately. S puts up no walls, and his is the first name that our visitors learn. He loves the attention and loves to play.
Sometimes S gets upset. But, his bad mood only lasts minutes. Then, he comes up (many times without any prompting) to say sorry. “I need to ask you something. I need to ask for forgiveness.” Then S gives the sweetest hug and kiss you’ve ever had. The way that S can set aside his pride or stubbornness and ask for forgiveness with such sincere humility amazes us every time.
For the last year or so, S has been talking to us about a classmate at school. “G is my girlfriend.” “G did this or that.” “I’m going to marry G.” We teased S about G, listened to him talk about her, etc., but we had never met her. Then at a school talent show, S pointed her out to us. One thing he had never mentioned about G? She uses a wheelchair. We were astounded. Maybe S doesn’t notice the wheelchair at all, or to him, it just doesn’t matter, it isn’t even worth mentioning. S is too preoccupied with the beautiful person in the wheelchair to pay any attention to the wheelchair.
S teaches us a lot: forgiveness, inclusion, how to laugh, how to be a free spirit. He really is an amazing kid!