A Love Letter
by FHI Kolkata volunteer Nabodita Ganguly
It was a rainy day when we went to an Indian NGO working for the rehabitilation of destitute and street children. Our main purpose was to perform an event. We were representing an NGO and aimed to make the kids happy, give them food, entertain them and teach them something.
It was then, I saw him.
As volunteers, we were asked to assist the kids and make handmade rakhis for children (Rakhi is a festival where women tie a peace of thread on their brother’s wrist and wish for their long and healthy life)
I am always inveterate to mingle with kids, maybe because they are more direct and easily approachable. As we were assisting the kids to make rakhis, a young boy of class three who was wearing a blue shirt and torned trousers, came to me and asked me if he could join us. With a smile on his face, he suggested the idea of coloring the rakhis in the color of India’s national flag.
“That’s a wonderful idea. Let’s do it,” I told him.
While every kid was busy making rakhis, somehow the kid with blue shirt whose name was Sahajan caught my attention because of his sincere work.
“So Sahajan, who will tie rakhi on your wrist?” I asked him.
“I don’t have a sister. I have just my aunty and my younger brother,” he told me.
“And your parents? Where do they stay?” I asked him.
“They died when I was small,” he said and went on laughing.
It takes a lot of courage to laugh when all our body is intoxicated with pain; pain of departure of our loved ones. It was his strength which made me proud of him and I hugged him tightly. Somehow, he resembled me of my five year old nephew who stays in Delhi.
“I have made the rakhis. Will you tie a rakhi on my wrist?” Sahajan asked me.
I nodded my head and tied the hand made rakhi.
“So what will you give me in exchange of the rakhi?” I questioned.
“A love letter,” he replied casually.
“Do you know what a love letter is?” I questioned.
“Yes. When we write to someone with love, it’s a love letter,” he replied.
I patted his head and smiled. After a while, he gave his love letter to me where, in a mount board he had written his name and drew a heart.
In this constantly busy world, we often forget to show our affection to our loved ones and try to run away from everything. It was Sahajan, who once again taught me the innocence of love and caring.
“So, what do you want to be when you grow up?” I asked Sahajan.
“I want to be a cricketer, like Virat Kohli,” he replied and started laughing.
“You laugh so much,” I replied.
“It helps me to live and go through my pain,” he replied.
I looked at him for a while. His eyes had a burning desire to do something, to make a change in life and lead life with optimism.
As the sun was setting in the west, I silently prayed to god to make his dreams successful.
It was Sahajan, who tried to make me understand that no matter what we go through, if we rely on happiness; it will help us to cope up with our pain. Because in the end, all we need is love and happiness which is enough to feed our souls.A Love Letter