Hanh: A Life Changed

“When I was six years old, my mom changed a lot. My life changed too.

Before my mom changed, she used to laugh. She played with me and I laughed too. She had a beautiful smile. I loved to sleep with her. She held me close when we slept. I was happy.

Then my aunt died in a motorcycle accident. My mom was pregnant with my little brother at that time. I don’t know what happened to my mom, but she got really sick.

She didn’t cook for us anymore. She didn’t sweep the house anymore. My brother was born and she nursed him, but she didn’t cook for me and my dad.

I didn’t go to school much. I had to take care of my mom, my brother and my dad. My mom laid in bed all day, and I washed her. I cleaned the house. I washed our clothes. I cooked.

I wanted to go to school but couldn’t. I didn’t have friends like others did.

I had two dreams at that time. I wanted to go to school and wanted my mother to be better.

One day, my baby brother was asleep and my mom take him to the well, put him into the bucket and lowered him into the well. But I saw it and ran to my baby brother before he reached the water. I pulled him up in the bucket, but was afraid for him after that.

Some days we didn’t have enough food. One time, we didn’t have food for three days. I was hungry.

This year, I came to live at Promise House. I am 13 now. It’s so different here. One of my dreams has come true! I go to school every day. I am far behind the other children but the housemother got me a tutor. She tells me not to worry that I am behind and not to think badly of myself.

I also have plenty of food, good clothes, friends and the mothers take good care of me. I wish my mom was better but for now, I like it here.

They also brought my brother here, so I don’t have to worry about him.”