Huang FuLong studies at a school for the deaf in Huangshi.
He is in middle school. He was doing quite well but was often discriminated against by other students. He became rebellious and often did something I could not understand. He stayed out late and didn’t sleep in his dormitory. I did not criticize him much. Instead, I continued to take care of his life and study, help him to get hot water or wash his quilt, and asked the teacher to look after him more.
However, I never could have imagined that he would leave the institution and go away. I almost went mad when I heard that he had left. I went to search every place he could have gone, and I left my phone on so that I would not miss any of his calls or messages. He left his room tidy, and it looked as if he just left for school and he would come back after school.
Finally, I saw an instant message and I learned he had gone to Kaifeng. I traveled a thousand miles to Kaifeng and found him. He was living in a small and dirty room, he was working for more than 10 hours a day and he had to cook for himself after work. I felt terrible. I bought food from the market and I cooked for him and his friends who were deaf and mute and were also working with him. He ate as if he was trying to swallow all of his suffering and setbacks, along with his hunger.
Before I left, I went to see his boss and told him about Huang FuLong’s background. His boss was also moved and he paid FuLong the money that was owed to him. I said to FuLong: “Please let me know if you have any troubles and please do come home if you would like.” Huang FuLong did not answer me. He looked away from me as if he was looking at somewhere near and somewhere far away. Although I could not ask him to go back home with me immediately, I really wished he could come back to the welfare institution with me, have a hot shower, eat a good meal and change into clean clothes.
I know children his age can easily make the wrong decisions and lose their way. But I also know the outside world could bring him experience and that is hardest for a mother to let go. In October, he finally came back. With his work experience, he had changed so much and made great progress. We were all very happy to see this. He had sent me lovely messages during the holidays, which were the most precious gift I could receive.
The children in our institution grow up with so much discrimination and self-abasement. It is difficult for me to understand why people would admire flowers and not pay attention to these children. Aren’t those flowers unknown? Don’t they also bloom in spring, just as our children grow?