Rescued from an Ant Heap

1969 S India Village winnowing

People who work for charitable organizations in Asia never have the experience of being overpaid. They’re usually entrusted with vast territories, multitudes of people to serve, and a limited pool of funds to apply to the task. Tales could be told of poverty and hunger among older generations of charitable organization employees in the early days of their employment. It takes courage and dedication to be a charity worker.

Suresh as a young worker had been moved from place to place answering the needs of his employer in different locations and language areas. He and his wife knew first hand problems of survival with limited funding. When the little undernourished baby was brought to their home for attention it was a great temptation to pass the problem along to others. The baby had been abandoned in a nearby village, and rescued from an ant heap in pathetic condition. The baby was too sick to manage more than faint cries as a result of raw flesh irritations from ant bites covering her entire body.

Boys are valued in a society where education is not readily available at village level, and where basic human needs are seldom satisfied. Girls are viewed as a liability for several reasons. First there’s the question of income generation, then the liability of having to pay dowry when girls mature and reach marriageable age. Finally a girl cannot perform religious ceremonies necessary to assist souls of the dead to the next incarnation.

However there was no hesitation on the part of Suresh’s wife as she looked at the small tormented baby girl, and saw future potential rather than a liability. She could train this young life for service to a community which had rejected her. She accepted responsibility for this tiny babe. So what if they were barely surviving themselves! Ethical behavior is not to be talked about; rather demonstrated. Suresh and his wife counted the baby an opportunity placed in their way to demonstrate a better way of life to the village which had abandoned this tiny human being on an ant heap. Villagers had failed to see any positive contribution this young life could make to their needs, but Suresh and his wife had other ideas.

In spite of family financial struggles the girl grew into a beautiful young woman. She successfully completed her education as a doctor, and entered into a happy marriage. Suresh and his wife had an inner satisfaction that comes to those who accomplish a noble purpose in life. Their adopted daughter’s education had fitted her to be of service to her society, and it was probable the community which had rejected her would be in need of her services some day.

The pleasure Suresh and his wife experienced knew no bounds, and they considered all sacrifices and hardships of little consequence. Within every nationality and social group it has been discovered doing good deeds for others gives ultimate joy and satisfaction.

“© Copyright Ian Grice 2014 All rights reserved”

21 Comments Add yours

  1. What a powerful story that brings happy tears, Ian…how horrible for that little baby to have been abandoned in that way. But what the couple did only proves kindness does exist, along with love and unselfish hearts…your last sentence ties it all together and bears an abundance of truth. I love stories with positive endings, so thank you for sharing!

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    1. Thank you for visiting one of my old posts. While names have been changed I know the folk concerned.

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      1. You’re welcome! I enjoyed reading!

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  2. Jane Thorne says:

    What a powerful story Ian and in accepting the gift, Suresh and his wife gifted back. I love reading your stories, I always learn from them. 🙂

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    1. And I enjoy yours. They are spontaneous and positive.

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  3. Madhu says:

    What kind of person abandons a baby on an ant heap??? My best friend works in an orphanage and she has harrowing stories to tell. And many inspiring ones such as yours. Thank God for people like Suresh and his wife.

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    1. Yes they were special people. Of course names were changed for privacy. We first met them when we shared an apartment building in Mumbai a long time ago. They and others we worked with and played evening games together with are dear friends today though some have passed on.

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  4. Mags Corner says:

    I believe no matter how anyone’s birth came about, they were born for a special reason. I am happy that this wee one was saved to fulfill her purpose in life. Sweet Ian I am sure you know the reason I love this story. Thank you so much for sharing it the story really touched my heart. Hugs!

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    1. Yes I know you have a tender heart for children who have been disadvantaged by society.

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  5. borika45 says:

    Another well written story Ian. I just love reading your writings. I can’t wait to move and settle in and get back to my writing. you have such a gift for words. thanks from me.

    Barb. 0438191843

    Date: Fri, 4 Jul 2014 02:14:03 +0000 To: bo_rika@hotmail.com

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    1. We are looking forward to you moving into that very nice home they are building for you. Then we too can be favoured with your return to writing again.

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  6. jstansfeld says:

    Great story Ian, and I assume that is a true tale although if it isn’t it could be. It is a credit to Suresh and his wife that their foundling grew up able and willing to further her parent’s humanitarian work. I hope that the villagers will eventually start to see that all people, male and female can contribute to the common good.
    As an aside I wonder how the next generation of Chinese and other societies who manage to skew the ratio of men to women will fare as their crop of young men grow up with not enough women to go around! The lack of wars to kill off the men must affect the balance.
    Cheerio, Jane

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    1. Good comment. I’ve often wondered about that too. Yes the story is basically as it happened though naturally names are changed.

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  7. Such is the standard we establish and those few good souls step outside of. I believe we call it playing it forward.

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    1. In this world of a “me first” mentality its refreshing to find there are still some who are contributors rather than takers in society.

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      1. That was what I was looking for Ian, it was on the tip of my tongue. The contributor or givers.

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  8. Definitely a vivid tale of leading by example. Hopefully that example spreads.

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    1. There are still good people is this world so we can expect some inroads into entrenched negative folkways.

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  9. Eric Alagan says:

    Any society that fails to tap the god given talents vested in half their population – is a society that will never reach it’s full potential.

    Many religions do hold back women. And secular laws which draw from religious reference points give a measure of legitimacy to such abhorrent practices. Of course, we can pick and chose the good found in all religious persuasions and —

    Suresh and his wife have done god’s bidding, I reckon. Bless them both.

    Have a good weekend,
    Eric 🙂

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    1. I agree with you. The failure to realize the importance of women in society is a blight on civilization. Your description of this lapse as abhorrent practice is well stated.

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