Finally, all the hardships of life are gone…translated…
Bi-Chiu never imagined that after age fifty, she would get a chance, to fulfill her dreams when she was younger, back then, the dreams seemed too distant and hard-to-reach…
A woman’s life, usually, must be sacrificed for the sakes of others, before she herself gets to finally shine out………
Meeting Up with Her Childhood Self
Bi-Chiu Hsieh, when she was born, she had one extra finger on her left hand than others, of all the children in her house, her parents gave her away to someone else to adopt, hoping, that she could have a better life in her adoptive parents’ home.
But, the adoptive father took to gambling, and the family went through the difficulties; as a child, she’d fallen ill, and it’d caused her vision in her right eye to become damaged, and, she looked weird, and that’s caused her to get singled out in school, her classmates would laugh at and tease her constantly.
The family is getting poorer by the day, and she had to give up on her studies, and started working as a young seamstress, and, stepped on the pedals of the machines over, over, and over again, and tapped out the rhythms from her own hard life.
As she’d left her middle school, she thought she was abandoned by the world, but the middle school teacher’s endless number of letters to her encouraged her to keep learning, to become an owner of her own life. This had allowed Bi-Chiu to find that much needed warmth in her already too cold, too dark life, and, these words helped her through the toughest times of her life, over, and over again.
Her birth mother once asked her as she’d cried, “Chiu, would you blame us for giving you away?”
Bi-Chiu, who’s a mother herself, had managed to heal up her own broken heart, and had wiped her tears out of hatred already, said to her own mother, “Dearest mother, I really don’t; I’d once imagined how wonderful it would have been, had you not given me up, how happy my childhood was; but, if you didn’t give me up, I would’ve never known how much you truly loved me, and how hard it would be, to be separated from one’s child, and I may not have taken up sewing, I wouldn’t have left home early, wouldn’t have found a husband who truly cherished me, nor would I be able to meet a TON of people who loved me so, and have this wonderful life.”
With her kids going off to school, Bi-Chiu started working as a volunteer mom for the schools, and would meet up with her childhood self from time to time—a child that got picked on by other children, a child who felt desperate because her/his own home’s problems, along with kids who are so disappointed with the world, on the verge, of giving up on themselves.
In order to help take care of these children, she’d become a counseling volunteer, and learned the profession’s ins and outs, held on to those helpless kids’ hands tightly. Then, she’d told them the stories of her own life naturally.
She found, that her own difficulties can help those kids temporarily forget about their own smaller troubles, that they’d found someone with similar predicaments, someone with whom, they could feel safe around and connected with, and felt comforted by.
Combining Her Art & Counseling
Other than volunteering and working, Bi-Chiu also took up Chinese paintings, and continued dying her own dreams when she was younger; even though, she hadn’t mastered the techniques yet, but the happiness she got from painting, it’s started her days with smiles, and ends them with this sense of satisfaction.
And, in the process of counseling the children, when she’d met up with a kid who enjoyed drawing and painting, she sees her own younger self in them. She’d always encouraged the children to develop their own interests, and to grab on to the chances to learn whenever they can.
Combining the art and counseling, it could help open the kids’ hearts to her, and dissolve that invisible wall between them. The skies are endless in the world of paintings, with no worries of making good grades, without the pressures to achieve, to perform. For Bi-Chiu, “Art is an unfinished dream of her childhood; and now, I’d made this interest of mine into a bridge between me and these children.”
Bi-Chiu had never imagined, that she could, after the age of fifty, achieve the dreams she’d dreamed of in the distance as she was still younger.
Telling her stories, it’d put her on center stage, and she’d become a volunteer of life education; telling her stories, she’d entered into the “Voluntary Education Award” sponsored by the White Elephant Publishing Company, and published, “My Name is Persistence—How Mama Bi-Chiu Turned Her Own Life Around,” it’d allowed more people to find her story, and to taste the bitterness, and the sweetness in life that came later.
These couple of years, even though her own kids had all graduated from elementary school, Bi-Chiu still volunteered at the Hsin-Jia Elementary School in Kaohsiung, she said, “It’s like I’m seeing myself in childhood again. And, if I can make it to where I currently am, these children with so much hardships in their lives, can also have their own separate skies to soar underneath. Never give up on any single child!” The hardships from her poverty stricken childhood became like a bitter wine, with the fermenting of time, it’d become aged and tasted amazing, and in the end, it’d become a rare gem.
Looking at her past, the moments that shone through, were the social support she’d had from her friends in education, her close friends, along with members of her own family.
In her rich and fulfilled volunteer career, Bi-Chiu had found the value of her own life, her own inner peace and happiness too. In the darkness of her life, she’d slowly, drawn out a colorful rainbow now…
So, this woman, despite her hardships earlier on in life, she’d still overcome ALL of her difficulties, and she’d turned her own bad childhood moments into lesson to teach others, and, there’s NO better way, to make use of one’s own life than this!