By Diken Patel*
Your acts of kindness are iridescent wings of divine love, which linger and continue to uplift others long after your sharing.
We all have our own unique way of supporting other people’s life journeys. One of these kind acts is clowning.
Clowning is dressing up as a clown and making people laugh, as simple as that. For me, it is dissolving my own identity, and finding a new one, a better one.
We found the pediatric cancer ward to be the most appropriate place to offer our smiles. Cancer is the imbalance of cells, and being happy helps in betterment of their health. What we do in clowning is, we go there dressing up as a clown and share our joy, laughter, craziness with the children.
Where we go little children have to go through immense pain of chemo and other treatments.Their environment must be filled with love and laughter, and not only with hospital accessories. A bit of creativity, artworks, plays, chanting, dancing etc. with them is a great way to remove monotony from their lives, for a while.
I met Narendra, a 10 year old, in this journey of clowning. He was diagnosed with cancer. I asked him if he ever gets scared of the disease he has. He replied to me that he does not, as he knows he will be okay. I asked him whether he prays, he replied that he does not as his family does that for him, he does not want to seem greedy. I asked him one last question, that does he get irritated of the pain he has to go through. He responded that he knows, he has to go through the pain to get better. He is so inspiring. He gave me courage, that I can hold my pain and suffering, and go through it with a smile.
Some days we also come to know the value of families. I came across a lady named ‘Rudi Maa’. She had a grandson having cancer. The love, devotion and strength of this lady was a remarkable story to hear.
After all this experience, today I feel I should choose life. Today I choose to feel freedom. Today I choose to feel my life in others. Today I choose not to deny my sensitivity and humanity, but to embrace it.
I have learnt in this journey, that kids are the best teachers, because they are free from all the barriers. They are the answers to questions like, how can we be truthful, playful, non-judgemental etc. We learn to never lose our enthusiasm. We get to know all we need to. We learn how to not miss any opportunity to laugh and cheer up, regardless of the pain we are going through.
Indulging ourselves into them, is also the best way to learn unconditional love.
Every child we encounter is a divine appointment. Profound gratitude to these little angels who have the power to reveal my true essence. They give me what I seek i.e. a reflection of who am I on the inside. I cannot hide my true self, when I am with them. I am still a child at heart, with a soul yet to discover.
*Volunteer at Sabarmati Ashram, Ahmedabad