Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Innocence Lost

Aren came home from school today with two envelopes in his folder...one addressed to Aren Harper, the other addressed to Mr. and Mrs. Harper. My first thought was, "Oh for the love, what did this kid do?" Well, it wasn't my kid that did anything, but another kid that rides the bus with Aren.

Each letter was an apology from - we'll call the kid "Gus" (anyone who speaks Bulgarian will appreciate that) - saying that he was wrong to hurt Aren's feelings and that he knew it was a mean thing to do and he wouldn't do it again. I immediately took Aren into his bedroom and asked what these letters were about. Aren explained to me that a few days ago on the bus "Gus" made fun of him by calling him a giraffe because his skin looked so funny. I seriously began crying right there.

Most people know the kind of ordeal Aren has been through. He was born with an immune system that just plain didn't work. He couldn't fight off infection and on top of the that, his immune system was confused, for lack of better words, and would develop antibodies against different systems in Aren's body, including his blood, his intestines, and his skin. His immune system attacked the pigment in Aren's hair and skin, leaving his hair looking very salt and peppery and his skin white as snow. After his bone marrow transplant some of his skin's pigmentation came back but not fully, leaving Aren's skin patchy.

It made me sick knowing that Aren was being teased for something he has absolutely no control over. "Gus" has no idea the pain Aren went through the first seven years of his life to get to a point today where he can actually ride a bus and be in school without worries of infection, or even playing regular games on the playground without breaking his bones. I ache for this little boy who is so tenderhearted and has such a love for life and would never dream of hurting another person.

When I asked Aren how he felt he kind of shrugged it off and told me it didn't matter to him. "I just decided not to talk to 'Gus' anymore." Good for him. Hopefully as he gets older he can continue this very adult attitude. As for me, I just need to remind myself that this is all part of life and unfortunately my "some day" of Aren learning another hard lesson is now.

10 comments:

Lors said...

I used to think that I was pretty forgiving and didn't hold grudges about things, that I wouldn't let things offend me for long. Then came the kids, if something was said about them (the whole autistic comment) Now, I see that I am not that Christ like of a person and can really let things bother me for sometime. Aren is a doll and we love him so much. We are so proud of him and his ability to be so strong in so many aspects of his life.

Rachel said...

Aren is such a sweet little boy. Children that have gone through such difficult trials as Aren has in his young life, possess such a maturity that is far beyond their years. His inner strength is very obvious and I imagine he will continue to carry that throughout his life.

Stohl Fam said...

Aren is awesome! He is going to do cool things with his life.

Melinda said...

Aren is such a great boy! He's been through so much and still has a great attitude! I just love him!

DeCrescenzo Family Blog said...

Think Chuck will dispense his brand of justice on little kids?

I do. Let's summon him.

Barbara Rees said...

MaryBeth, you have one awesome kid there. I think I'm gonna come have my own little 'chat' with Gus though. Jerk. Aren is the BEST, and I just wish I had a girl his age so we could arrange the marriage right now!

brossettelewis said...

Did Gus's mom get a note saying her kid is a jerk? Do you have Gus's address? I could take care of that.

joywinn said...

I think Aren has some amazing experiences and blessings ahead of him. I really believe that he is being prepared now for something really great. All these experiences will turn for his good someday. There is a reason he has such a great mommy.

kellyclay said...

MaryBeth, Aren is such a cool kid.

My Name's Sarah said...

"Gus" sounds like a bully's name. I hate him.