Not all heroes wear capes. This man from China is a wheelchair user who can only move his arms and hands. It’s astounding to see this loving son taking care of his father, who suffered from a stroke.
Zhang Xiaodong, 36, was diagnosed with Ankylosing Spondylitis last 2008. His condition worsened after three months, which made him unable to walk/stand. Ankylosing Spondylitis is an inflammatory disease that causes some of the bones in the spine to fuse, which affects the posture. Symptoms worsen as time passes by, and there’s no known cure for it yet.
Zhang and his bed-ridden father used to live with their relatives. He decided to move out and live with his dad last March. He said, “My relatives are suffering economically and mentally because of our conditions. They are very stressed and are having a hard time.”
He added, “So I want to do something to ease their burden. I can’t be selfish.”
The government gives him $110 monthly for his needs. He could not afford to hire a caregiver for his dad. That was why he opted to take care of him instead. He cooks, goes to the market, feeds his father, gives him a sponge bath, mops the floor, among others.
He can also take care of himself well. He takes a shower on his own, puts on his shoes, takes care of his cat, etc., with the help of his customized long poles. On top of that, he has a Social media account where he uploads their daily grind.
He said, “It’s easy for me to give up on myself, but I have my father. Although I’m not giving him the best care if I’m gone, my father’s life wouldn’t get better, it would only get worse.”
He added, “I really can’t leave him alone. I must take up the responsibility and keep trying.”
He started to upload how their days went by on Social media last year. This was his way of raising funds for his joint surgery. As a result, many volunteers showed up to help them manage their chores every day.
A doctor also volunteered to check if surgery would be possible for his existing condition. “I really want to undergo surgery so I can stand up again and take good care of my father, aunt, and uncle,” Zhang explained the reason why he wanted to recover. “They’re getting older, but don’t have children to look after them,” he added.
“This is my only goal, and I’m striving toward it,” he said.
Kudos to this man who never lets the challenges of life bring him down. God is a good Father who ensures that things are well taken care of for His children. He will never be overwhelmed by our needs, no matter how big they may be.
“Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn, yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds!” Luke 12:24