A Minor Miracle and Some Good Detective Work

RosyRelationships and a sense of belonging fuel our lives, and give it meaning and a desire to thrive against all odds. However, in the lives of many people with disabilities, freely given, unpaid relationships are few, if at all. And this wound can shake the very core of one’s being.

Rosy, now sharing an apartment with two women in the quiet neighborhood of Herbertpur, is a lively, helpful, and sprightly young woman, and much loved. Her housemates and everyone who knows her acknowledge her as a leader, home maker, a quick learner, and an advocate. Rosy had lived in an institution in terrible conditions for many years. After moving from the institution to the community, she has grown from a quiet, shy, timid girl to a happy, carefree adult. Yet, there was something vital missing in Rosy’s life.

People around Rosy, people who live with her and know her closely, noticed that she loved visiting the local Gurudwara. She was familiar with the Punjabi language, and she repeatedly expressed a desire to go to Poanta Sahib, a nearby town in Himachal.

Rosy with visitorsThey knew that Rosy longed to reconnect with her family, although she had not been in contact with them since she was a young child. Rosy remembered they were bangle sellers and that she used to help them at the langar meal in a gurudwara. With those few clues, the team began searching for her family. They arranged a visit with a well-connected Sikh family near Poanta Sahib, and they immediately connected to Rosy’s buoyant personality. The people who knew Rosy were so surprised to see how outgoing and confident she was when interacting with them. The visitors enquired about her past, her memories from the past, and clues which might lead to finding her family. Rosy was quick to respond excitedly in Punjabi – she was aglow in her true element! She mentioned the langar meal that she helped prepare, and this was a great clue, as the team learned that certain Gurudwaras serve certain meals. Now they had a location- they knew which particular Gurudwara she belonged to.

Arriving to that particular Gurudwara, they enquired about a bangle seller family and were directed immediately to the home of her brothers. A joyful reunion happened at that very moment, and Rosy has re-established relations with her two brothers, her step-mother and her sister, all of whom are so enriched to know their long-lost family member.

This is one of the minor miracles that are seen so often in this work of helping people take their place in the community. In Rosy’s life, having family brings renewed hope for exciting possibilities—reconnecting with her roots, reunifying with her family, reviving of old familial relationships. Any or all that can help heal those deep wounds in Rosy’s life and uncover the real person that she is—someone who is loved, cherished, and belongs. For those who helped with this astounding bit of detective work, this experience also brings renewal, deep satisfaction, and a sense that the work really matters.