Image source: http://www.cea-ace.ca
After attending the 2015 APAC (Asia-Pacific Autism Conference in Brisbane), I went to Canberra to visit my daughter. The conference experience is mixed because the more I learnt about intervention strategies to manage the diverse needs of people with autism spectrum disorders in their early adulthood and the more challenges I became aware of in developing these areas in my home country. My mind is stuffed with cutting edge knowledge. I feel kind of pressure and confused.
It is until my daughter brought me to the disability home for dinner last night had I felt relieved and anchored. The simple presence, love and biblical reading of eight adults including my daughter and me gave me inner joy and peace. When these disabled people said prayer for the group, I was touched and inspired.
Regardless of what great stuff I got from the APAC, the most important and immediate thing to do is to serve with love with sensitivity and compassion. It’s a blurred line between the one who serves and the one who is served. Like making friends with the disabled, I feel the presence of joy and contentment among us. These special moments sharing with the special friends made my day.
Image source: http://brandthinkmarketingdo.com
Life is full of hopes. I wouldn’t expect that a simple dinner at a Malaysian fast food restaurant brings in a beautiful encounter. I met a gentleman who has come a long way from emergency medicine to forensic psychiatry for bringing more hopes to people. A string of topics covering forensic psychiatry, intellectual disabilities, Autism, Attention Deficit, bipolar depression, personality disorders, psychopharmacology, rehabilitation, aging and other mental health issues, go non-stop. It is our first encounter.
Over the 20 minutes of conversation, we find shared vision in realizing potentials in people regardless of their age, intellectual functioning or social competence. I discover that knowledge itself doesn’t grow fulfillment. It is the genuine and truthful sharing between two passionate learners counts!
The encounter helps me recognize the gift of friendship. It is precious and vital to personal and professional growth. How wonderful to find that we are not alone!
Last night, we, a team of 4, went to find migrant children because we wanted to understand their needs and explore if we could organize some activities to build up friendship circles.
We had a great talk with a group of people in the park at Sham Shui Po, a district about 3 miles away from the Central Business District of Hong Kong. The CBD signifies power, prestige, luxury and future whereas Shamshuipoo represents poverty, deprivation and no future.
Walking through a park where one could find people from diverse ethnic background gathering, we met some nice children. We talked and played with them. Their parents were from Naples, Indonesia, Vietnam. Time flies. We talked with these families for over an hour feeling so close to them. They allowed us to sit on their mat and chat like family. They hoped we could help them Chinese.
We will see them next Saturday at 1930. Please join us if you have time.