Tisha: a girl her mother wanted to bury alive
Tisha is a smiling, energetic, extremely talented 16-year-old girl. She speaks great English and sings beautifully. Originally she wanted to marry a Canadian, but now the favourite is Bangladeshi. Thanks to donors from the BanglaHope organization, she is going to India to study at the SAMS boarding school and wants to become a dentist. Her initially horror story has a happy sequel.
A family tragedy and great hope
Hi Tisha, what's your story?
When I was born, my father left the family and married another woman. My mother couldn't stand it, she almost went crazy and wanted to bury me alive. I was only 6 months old. But my neighbours rescued me and took me to an orphanage near Dhaka. I was there for about 2 months. My aunts then took me to the BanglaHope orphanage.
Have you got any brothers or sisters?
Yes, sister and brother. They were still small when I was born. They couldn't take care of me. As I think about it today, I think God had a plan for me, so he took me from there and led me to BanglaHope. I became a Christian, I grew up and I can make God happy with my life. And now I have the opportunity to study abroad. So I think God has a great plan for me.
You know, if it happened to someone else, he would have a chance to study hard. It's a miracle for me that God brought me to BanglaHope and now I have a chance to go abroad. It is the fulfilment of my dream. People from abroad even want to adopt me. One family from Canada.
Do you have any connection with your mother, brother or sister?
We are not in touch at the moment. I met them during the last holidays. But the meeting was strange.
You know, I feel at home in BanglaHope. I feel like my real family is here. But I can't stand it at home, it's hard for me to stay there. I'm an adult, and when I go home, I don't feel like it's my family, even though it's my family. It's different, weird, I can't explain it.
I understand that at home you feel more like a guest than a family member… You did not live together, you have no experiences together… What was the significance of staying at the BanglaHope orphanage for you?
BanglaHope's mission is to change the lives of orphans, children and women. I learned a lot of things and good behaviour here. :-)
Yes. Sometimes I get very angry, so they punish me. But at home, when they tell me to slap me, I'm as mad as crazy. I shout at them, “Who are you that you want to slap me? You are not my family! ”But when they say to me at BanglaHope,“ Tisha, don't do it, and don't do that, or we will punish you, ”I will accept. It's just ok for me, it's okay.
So have they ever slapped you?
No, never! But I'll just get some work to do.
You said that the people at BanglaHope have led you to God since childhood.
Yes. We have morning and evening worship. We are not a church, but we have supporters. A church and a girls' boarding school are being built here.
You know Jesus is my best friend. When I'm sad, when I cry, I take the Bible and read. I love Psalm 23. When I was little, Carrie from BanglaHope told me to study it and remember the verse, "The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing." He helps me, I love him.
Choice of profession
I heard you just passed the SSC (Secondary School Certificate) state exam. Will you be successful?
Certainly! I will be successful! And I'm going to study in India and become a dentist. There is already a student from us who wants to do cardiac surgery. BanglaHope supports her and now they want to send four more of us to India. I'm one of them. We have great support.
Why did you choose dentistry?
When I was little, I said I would be great to become a teacher. Then I grew up a little and said to myself, "No, I want to be a nurse." Then I grew up again and said to myself that I didn't want to be a nurse. I saw dentists coming here to the orphanage - Dr Laura and other dentists. They came here and I thought it would be a great job, but I didn't think about becoming a dentist. And then I grew up again and said to myself, "I want to be an actress."
And then I changed my mind and wanted to be a singer, and I sang and rehearsed a lot. And a lot of people told me, "You're a Christian, you can't sing rock´n´roll, no bad songs." So I told them I wanted to sing both Christian and rock´n´roll songs. And they told me that if I did both, people would think that Christian songs didn't come from my heart, so I said I wouldn't sing both. But I didn't want to give up, so I prayed to God, "Please, please help me become a singer." So I had voice classes with Robin, who teaches me. I call him "Dad", and he teaches me - singing, guitar, violin, really a lot of subjects.
Maybe you will become a singing dentist.
Yes, my donor tells me: "If you want to be a singer, you will conjure a smile on people's faces. And if you want to be a dentist, you'll also put a smile on people's faces, and even better smile. ” and I like that a lot.
Study at SAMS and personal matters
How do you like studying here at SAMS boarding school?
SAMS is a very good school, better than others, we have good grades. Teachers are kind. In the state exams, SAMS students are better than other schools. The success rate is 90% and sometimes even 99%.
Ah, that's why you're so sure you passed the SSC exam. And now imagine that you are already a dentist. Where are you going to work? On the clinic? Or will you have a private practice?
I will be a dentist in about 8 years, we'll see. And I want to work at the BanglaHope dental clinic. Like Dr Laura.
You told us 3 years ago that you wanted to marry a Canadian or an American. But today we heard that you would like to marry a Bangladeshi man. Why have you changed your mind?
That's because I'm growing up, my way of thinking changes and my opinions as well. When I told you that, I was only 12 years old and now I am 15, and I will be 16 soon. So I am adulting and also my opinions and preferences are changing. And the question of family life is very much a question of culture.
What does an injured child's heart need?
Tisha, I'm thinking of children like you. Imagine you are in a BanglaHope orphanage and a new girl comes. You see, the girl is a little desperate and lonely. How is she going to experience it?
You know, when I was little, and first got to the BanglaHope orphanage, I was only 8 months old. And I kept crying and crying. Today people say that my voice is so strong because I cried a lot. They say, "Tisha, when you were little, you cried and cried." They had to lock me in the bathroom because I disturbed the others. So I cried there and cried until I fell asleep. Or sometimes I cried in bed all night, cried, cried, and only fell asleep in the morning when it was time to wake up.
I'm sorry to hear that...broken heart...What would you do for a child like you?
If a girl like me comes, I know well how to help her. I would pray for her, I would talk to her, I would play with her so that she would not be alone. So that she doesn't feel like no one cares about her. You know the people at BanglaHope take care of us like their own children. But sometimes there were feelings that no one cares about me, that no one loves me. Orphans know what it's like to be without a family.
Do you still have the feeling that no one cares about you, that no one loves you?
Not anymore, but I thought so. When I came to SAMS, I was more alone. I was only 12 years old when I came here, I was very young, it was very difficult for me. And then I made friends, I talked to them, but somehow it still wasn't that. But then I had a lot of friends - you know I'm very friendly - and I felt great surrounded by so many friends that love me.
Tisha, thank you for the interview. I wish you great success in your studies and your life.
PS: Every child has a unique story. You can also become a part of it. Many more children need your help.