My own faith in Chaitanya started giving me abundant strength. I no longer to hide myself from the glaring eyes of the world. I took him around with me. He went with us everywhere like any normal child. We were not sorry or comfortable carrying him around.
      If I required help for him in public places, I was not embarrassed to seek it from people around. I did not mind telling them that he was a special child. I was no more scared of people's curious look and awkward questions. I could talk about Chaitanya's problem calmly. As my mind opened up further, I could discern a new hope springing in my heart. I felt happy I was a Special mother.
      The special school did Chaitanya a lot of good. He was now a much more confident person, adored by his teacher, his friends and his school staff. His speech improved and expression became clearer. His social manners became laudable.
      Academically, he was still lagging behind the expected standards of learning but it was okay. He started developing an all-round interest in craft, art, music, dancing and sports.
      Early in 1997-98, when he returned from state level inter-school sports, he had two prizes to his credit and a silver medal. He had won his laurels in athletic events and the silver medal in running race.
     When I saw the prizes and read the citation Chaitanya had received, I was stupefied, in total disbelief, then-hugged him, kissed him and cried unabashedly to my heart's content. That day, I cried for the first time out of joy and a sense of being vindicated. Without practice he had competed with approximately 1,800 children drawn from various schools all over the state. He was subsequently selected for marathon race, but he could not participate due to a health problem. "May be next year, he would", I assured myself. And I, as his proud mother, would proudly chronicle his future achievements and success to inspire other mothers of the world.
      Looking back at my own life, I feel that it is the spirit with which we can accept our life gracefully is what matters ultimately; and it is love which nourishes us. All other things are unimportant. Chaitanya has made me look inwards. His handicap doesn't disturb me any longer. He and I shall live with it and still be happy. The mental strength which he has given to me is inexhaustible.
       One day, as both of us got onto a public transport bus, Chaitanya offered to buy the tickets for us.
      "One full, one half," he said to the conductor beaming with joy.
       Looking at him, I wondered whether he was really only a half ? An incomplete person? Was I really full? Complete in all respect? Why do then normal people feel that they are 'full' and others like Chaitanya are  half or incomplete? Chaitanya's world is complete in itself, pure and innocent while our lives are full of deceit, jealousies, ill feelings.
       His words have intrigued me ever since. Whenever I think of Chaitanya, I feel he is complete in himself although a little different from us. How could I call him only a half? The half, incomplete person was myself and not him. The distance for the bus was the same for both of us. Only the tickets were priced differently.
       The day the world sees him the way I do, it will not be a one full or a one half world. It will be one full world- A world full of love, caring and sharing.

                                                                                                                       

                                                                                                                               Neela Satyanarayan