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Dated: Saturday, September 14, 2019

Theme : happiness.

Title : A Handful of Happiness

“Happiness is like a butterfly, the more you chase it, the more it will run away from you. But, if you stand still and wait, perhaps it will perch gently on your shoulder.”

There was once a boy who went by the name of Casper Newman. He was famously known at his high school. He wasn’t all dark and mysterious but he was an extrovert and a ball of sunshine. He was a straight A student. Every one adored him. The teachers praised him and the students hung out with him.

One day, fate played a cruel trick on him. Just as he was leaving his biology class, his phone rang. It was an unknown number, he picked it up and just a heart beat later a terrifying news punched him in the guts. It was as he was suffocating and the world around him was closing up. He rushed to his car and drove to the nearest hospital where they had told him to come. All the way, he was thinking that there was no way that it could be real.

His heart was torn with anguish and he felt hollow inside. There he saw the dead bodies of his parents looking so miserable that it made his heart clench with agony. A dam had burst inside him and there was no stopping it. Tears rolled down his cheeks uncontrollably and he felt completely lost. Why!? Why did it have to be him!? Why did it happen to his parents!? His mind screamed unanswerable questions. He sank into his knees on the hospital floor, sobbing hardly. The nurses tried to console him, but it was no help. No one could change this sick and twisted fate. His parents had died in a car accident. Their car had crashed against another car rest was history.

The funeral was short, only close relatives were allowed. Every one pitied him, whispered sorries and gave him sympathy. A few asked if he would like to stay with them but he refused. His aunt who was his mother’s sister sat by him and clasped his hand with hers. She said shakingly “I know you’re devastated. And you feel as if this is all a huge nightmare. But it is not the case. I wanted to ask you to stay with us, but you don’t want to and I respect your decision. Your uncle and I have agreed to send you weekly allowance for the bills fees and your necessities. It will be about eight grant. Please accept this from us as we won’t be here for you. I…” she paused to take a minute for composing herself. “Your uncle and I will be going back to U.S for our business. And feel free to spend as much as you want, we won’t mind. You are like a son to us . We are making billions each day and it’s about time we spend the money on something useful.”

Casper said nothing and just nodded. His aunt hugged him and sniffled, wishing him the best of luck.

He had no siblings to share the pain with which made the loss of his parents like rock over his shoulders.

After his parent’s death, when he arrived to school, Casper Newman was somebody that the school no longer recognized. He was now quiet and hardly spoke. Instead of wearing his usually bright colored clothes, he wore black. Instead of being the ball of sunshine he was, he had now built his walls so high that no one could climb them. Although he was still a straight A student, that did not matter to the teachers anymore. He had no close friends to knock some sense into or to console him, which only added salt to the wound.

This sudden change of behavior continued for a few months until Casper stumbled across a book called ‘A Handful Of Happiness’. The book portrayed a story of a boy who had lost his parents when he was just 3 years old. But his grandmother, raised him. He was happy with her as she was his sole guardian and the only person he was frank with. But fate showed him a yellow card, and his grandmother got alzhelmizier’s disease. The boy was devastated and felt dejected. But he still had hope that one day his grandmother would get better even though she had long forgotten him. He waited for a miracle.

Casper felt ashamed and sorrowful after reading it. He realized that he was better off than the boy as he had spent 18 years with his parents. It made him realize the reality, and that he had to accept it no matter what. From that day on he started being himself, the boy he was, and even though he had an emptiness in his heart he felt that perhaps, someday that hole would be filled and that one day, he will find the true meaning of life. After all, as his father had said:

“There will be stars watching over you, but it is only when the moon is bright, the clouds are on the night sky, we forget the stars.”

By Lubaba Zaheer – 8B

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