It’s a human-thing

It happened a couple of days ago. A quiet sober evening when I went to the church. It was surprisingly, the first time I reached well before the mass began.
I sat on one of the pews , empty minded and already feeling exhausted and lethargic after the day’s activities.
There wasn’t anybody sitting next to me because I had chosen one of the most solitary places .
I grabbed a hymn book and was inexplicably engrossed amidst the various hymns.
When I was already mesmerized and lost in my thoughts, a lady not more than 30 scurried across and occupied the seat next to me. She was carrying a child in her frail arms and an unfathomable expression on her face.
I was mystified by the way she carried a child which was apparently 6 or 7 years old . Why would any mother do such a thing?A six year old child can no doubt walk on its own.

I smirked to myself thinking how parents spoil their children by excessively pampering and making them mentally vulnerable in today’s defying world.
It was then I noticed the child’s bizarre gestures.
Then it struck me like a bolt of lightening.
The child was autistic and handicapped.


I was moved with compassion and felt mortified over my ruthless mistaken assumptions.
The child looked at me and beamed in a gullible manner,    clearly unaware of my wrong perceptions.
I smiled too,sadly.
I was silently overwhelmed and pain-stricken.


Just then,the celebrant moved towards the altar and I was whisked out of my deep contemplation.
The mass was about to begin.

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© Varina Berryl Rasquinha,, 2015.
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