My friend, let’s call her Julie, adopted twin boys during the pandemic. Late last year one of her boys was diagnosed with cancer, and now spends long spells in hospital for treatment. Occasionally he is allowed home over a weekend, to be reunited with his twin brother. It’s been tough on this little family, especially taking into consideration all the COVID procedures and protocols needing to be observed. Julie and her family have stepped up to the challenges with determination and hope.
Julie, a member of Southport Ward, Liverpool England Stake, sent out a plea for help late one Friday afternoon. Her little boy was responding well to recent medication and a lull in procedures was going to mean a weekend out of hospital. They could go home to sleep in their own beds for a couple of nights. However, there was a problem; the little boy was bereft because his favourite hospital toy, a 16-inch dinosaur to which he had become attached, had to be left on the ward.
I quickly contacted our church community to see if anyone had a similar dinosaur. Having no luck, I thought I would ask our wider Southport community? I put together a short explanation of the situation, with a photo of the toy, and made a post on local web selling pages and freecycle sites. Within moments I had hints and suggestions as to where I may be able to purchase or order a similar toy. But it was already Friday evening!
Then, I got a message from a mother who had shared the story with her dinosaur-enthusiast son. He had immediately offered to donate one of his prized figures to the sick little boy. Julie and I were so touched. I arranged to collect it immediately.
On my way, my phone a message arrived from another mother. Her child had seen her looking at my ‘post’ and had recognised the dinosaur in the photograph as being the same as the one that he had. He was offering to give up his toy to someone he didn’t know but knew was in need. I was so moved and excited because Julie’s little son is a twin, so this would mean both little boys would have a toy dinosaur with which they could play together over this special weekend.
Julie was overcome with emotions when I arrived at her door with the two dinosaurs. She just couldn’t believe people’s generosity and the willingness of two boys who had heard of their plight and jumped at the opportunity to sacrifice their own treasured possessions to cheer a sick child. There are so many wonderfully kind-hearted people about, especially young mothers who are teaching, through example, selflessness and compassion.