Cerebral Palsy does not stop twins from running a business on WeChat!
If they can stay positive in this condition, so can we all.
A person suffering from Cerebral Palsy(CP) has trouble controlling his body movements. It is caused because of an injury or malformation when the brain is developing. Needless to say, they have a difficult time coping with routine activities.
However, it did not stop the twins, Tian Xiaolu and Tian Lulu from running a business on WeChat! These twins from the Dandong, Liaoning province of China suffer from a severe form of Cerebral palsy. Tian Lulu can use just two fingers, but Tian Xiaolu ends up typing using her nose. This is indeed very hard to imagine.
As the report goes, the twins were born to parents who could not hear or speak. As a result, Tian Lulu, the elder twin is the only one who can communicate verbally. Using her fingers, she taught herself how to type Chinese characters. Tian Xiaolu used a tablet computer that was gifted to the family to do an online part time job. The father supported the family with his modest income, however, the meagre earnings of the twins were not something you could ignore. It gave them a sense of purpose.
The situation worsened when the father passed away last year due to stomach cancer. The income of the family took a substantial hit. However, instead of taking handouts from neighbours and wellwishers, the Tian sisters decided to do something remarkable. With the help of a few friends, they set up an online shop using WeChat.
They started selling edibles and later scaled up to selling sanitary pads.
The earnings from the shop are barely enough to support the family. However, the Tian sisters are hopeful. They refuse handouts and donations from individuals stating that the local government is supporting them. Instead, they are trying hard to grow the shop.
Tian sisters are a remarkable example of how to be cheerful even when dealt with a bad hand. Both of them cannot work for long as it tires them out. However, the new shop is exciting for them. And why not! They have made a lot of friends in the process of setting up the shop! The will of these twins is to be admired.
Cerebral palsy is not a disease. The children who are affected had some kind of traumatic injury very early in their life. As a result, they end up having a varying degree of disability. This can happen to anyone, but a parent should not lose hope.
The world has started acknowledging that these people do not have a mental disorder or a learning disability. Most of them can think and process information like any other individual. The only problem they have, and it is not a minor one, is that their body does not move as their brain would like it to move.
As denizen of a world where information is at our fingertips, it would be ignorant of us not to know about CP. Here are the things we can do to give people with cerebral palsy the dignity they deserve.
- Educate yourself about Cerebral Palsy. As parents, you may encounter these unfortunate children anywhere. They may even be your child's classmates. So it is a good idea to read up a bit about cerebral palsy. Once you know about it, any prejudices you may have would be replaced by pride: a pride that you cohabit the world with these strong-willed people.
- Sensitise your children towards those suffering from Cerebral palsy. Children pick up the prejudices of adults quickly. They often turn to parents and see how the parents react to something out of normal. If you have taken your child to a paediatrician, chances are that you would meet another child with CP. Imbibe it in your children that they are not so different. Approach them with their parent's permission and exchange a few words. You will teach your child an important lesson early on - all humans are equal.
- Show them respect as humans, not sympathy as disabled. The last thing these people need is to be treated as handicapped. When you treat them as 'special', you deny them the dignity of being treated as equal members of the society. Treat them and their parents as you would treat any other family.
- Extend support if they need it. It is not easy to lead a life with CP, nor is it easy to take care of a child with CP. More than those affected, the parents need support. So if you know any such parent, remember that they could use one more friend. You would not believe how much you can impact a life by just having a simple conversation.
The story of Tian sisters is very inspiring. It shows us what a strong-willed person can do with right support. Do let us know what you think.
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