Dr. Alastair McAlpine, a pediatrician who lives in Cape Town, South Africa had an assignment due regarding life. He went to the hospital to children that have terminal illnesses and asked them some questions.
He asked them what gives their life meaning, what comforts them and what do they truly enjoy in life. Alastair realized that everyone can learn from these answers that the children gave him. So he decided to share his assignment on Twitter.
The wisdom and passion for life these youngsters have is amazing! These answers will have you grabbing for the tissue box and make you appreciate your life and everyone and everything in it.
For an assignment, I asked some of my terminal paediatric palliative care patients what they had enjoyed in life, and what gave it meaning. Kids can be so wise, y'know. Here are some of the responses (Thread).— Alastair McAlpine (@AlastairMcA30) February 1, 2018
Not one of them said they wished to watch more tv or scroll through social media. Because they most likely do this so much each and every day that they get bored of it.
First:— Alastair McAlpine (@AlastairMcA30) February 1, 2018
NONE said they wished they'd watched more TV
NONE said they should've spent more time on Face Book
NONE said they enjoyed fighting with others
NONE enjoyed hospital
They all just want to spend more time with their family, friends, and pets at home.
MANY mentioned their pets:— Alastair McAlpine (@AlastairMcA30) February 1, 2018
'I love Rufus, his funny bark makes me laugh.'
'I love when Ginny snuggles up to me at night and purrs'
'I was happiest riding Jake on the beach.'
Even though they wanted to be with their parents they expressed great concern for their well being and hope they would okay.
MANY mentioned their parents, often expressing worry or concern:— Alastair McAlpine (@AlastairMcA30) February 1, 2018
'Hope mum will be ok. She seems sad.'
'Dad mustn't worry. He'll see me again soon.'
'God will take care of my mum and dad when I'm gone'
ALL of them loved ice-cream.— Alastair McAlpine (@AlastairMcA30) February 1, 2018
They explained all the fun things they love to do with their friends and family.
Building sand castles, reading story books, practically anything fun to keep their minds of the fact that they are very sick.
ALL of them loved books or being told stories, especially by their parents:— Alastair McAlpine (@AlastairMcA30) February 1, 2018
'Harry Potter made me feel brave.'
'I love stories in space!'
'I want to be a great detective like Sherlock Holmes when I'm better!'
Folks, read to your kids! They love it. /5
Many of them loved swimming, and the beach.— Alastair McAlpine (@AlastairMcA30) February 1, 2018
'I made big sandcastles!'
'Being in the sea with the waves was so exciting! My eyes didn't even hurt!' /7
You know how we always care what other people think of us? Well, it's about time we stopped doing that!
Don't care what others think, but rather care how they treat you. This is what most of these kids wished they stopped doing a long time ago.
MANY wished they had spent less time worrying about what others thought of them, and valued people who just treated them 'normally'.— Alastair McAlpine (@AlastairMcA30) February 1, 2018
'My real friends didn't care when my hair fell out.'
'Jane came to visit after the surgery and didn't even notice the scar!' /6
Kindness from strangers or people that they love was the biggest component they cared about and loved.
And of course, laughter made them feel better.
Almost ALL of them valued kindness above most other virtues:— Alastair McAlpine (@AlastairMcA30) February 1, 2018
'My granny is so kind to me. She always makes me smile.'
'Jonny gave me half his sandwich when I didn't eat mine. That was nice.'
'I like it when that kind nurse is here. She's gentle. And it hurts less' /8
Almost ALL of them loved people who made them laugh:— Alastair McAlpine (@AlastairMcA30) February 1, 2018
'That magician is so silly! His pants fell down and I couldn't stop laughing!'
'My daddy pulls funny faces which I just love!'
'The boy in the next bed farted! Hahaha!'
Laughter relieves pain. /9
Playing with their favorite toys cheered them up and made them happy! Not playing with an iPad like most kids these days do.
Time with their family was the most precious thing to them and they couldn't get enough of it.
Kids love their toys, and their superheroes.— Alastair McAlpine (@AlastairMcA30) February 1, 2018
'My Princess Sophia doll is my favourite!'
'I love Batman!' (All the boys love Batman)
'I like cuddling my teddy' /10
Finally, they ALL valued time with their family. Nothing was more important.— Alastair McAlpine (@AlastairMcA30) February 1, 2018
'Mum and dad are the best!'
'My sister always hugs me tight'
'No one loves me like mummy loves me!' /11
“I was inspired to share the thread because there was so much negativity on my timeline,” Alastair tells Scary Mommy. “My brave patients were countering it all with such beautiful and profound insights, that they immediately brightened my day, and I hoped that they would do the same for others.”
Stop buying and giving your kids all these expensive things, we know, we all want to spoil our kids and give them things that we weren't able to have when we were kids. But have you ever sat back and saw that kids are at their happiest when they are playing in the mud with their siblings or watching a movie on a rainy day with the whole family.
Those are the moments that make life worth living for all of us whether we are little kids or adults.
Take home message:— Alastair McAlpine (@AlastairMcA30) February 1, 2018
Be kind. Read more books. Spend time with your family. Crack jokes. Go to the beach. Hug your dog. Tell that special person you love them.
These are the things these kids wished they could've done more. The rest is details.
Oh... and eat ice-cream. /End