“She was all of 13 but the confidence oozing out of this child far surpassed her age. She was a Magic Bus child living in the slums of Bombay, a child who was truly making the magic happen!
Her dream she said was to become a dancer and when I asked what type of dancer she would like to be, to my utter surprise she said “hip hop”, with a twinkle in her eye and excitement in voice. She wanted to be a professional hip hop dancer!
I turned to her mother and asked how she felt about her daughter displaying her dance moves publicly, to which she replied with pride and a beaming smile, that she would support whatever her daughter wanted to do. She went on to sheepishly admit that she did indeed dance away many an evening with her daughter in their tiny home. I also learnt that there is a Magic Bus Community Youth Leader who loves hip hop and teaches this girl and other children in the community “the hip hop moves”.
In my life, I once faced a crossroad of choosing art versus medicine as a career, and even though I am immensely passionate about what I do and feel truly humbled to be able to serve my patients, I have only recently felt complete. It was when I finally decided to express myself through my creativity, and found the courage to share my art with the world, that I stumbled upon the missing piece of the puzzle, and hence discovered my life’s purpose.
However, when I was a young girl living in Bombay, I favored a “real” career in medicine over the insecurity of a career in the arts. Although I lived a privileged life, I lacked the courage to do back then what this girl is determined to do in her life today.
As I walked away from her home feeling inspired, I was awe-struck by the girl’s creativity, grit and tenacity. She was living in one of the worst housing conditions in the entire world, and yet she didn’t let that dim her inner light, which on the contrary was shining brighter than Bombay’s mid-day sun.
As I left to go back to my home in Houston, I felt so proud and blessed to be associated with an organization like Magic Bus that gives children the magical gift of dreaming big and the tools to follow their dreams and make them real. I know I will see this girl dancing on the world stage soon, so stay tuned!”