#SiblingPower- Best friends & confidantes, Sherin & Shreya define true sibling goals
17 year old Sherin Zachariah who has autism, is a writer who has published her own books. Sherin’s youngster sister 13 year old Shreya is her biggest supporter and best friend. From childhood, Shreya has been aware of her elder sister’s disability and stood by her through thick and thin. Their mother Sangeetha recollects the many incidents where she has felt proud of raising compassionate kids like Sherin and Shreya.
When you have a sibling, you have a best friend and confidante too. It is always great to share your happiness and sadness with someone whom you know will last a lifetime. 17 year old Sherin Zacharia who has autism is a writer. Her younger sister 13 year old Shreya Zachariah has been a constant source of motivation to write poems and stories. Their unconditional love towards each other is what makes their relationship more beautiful as each day passes.
Their mother Sangeetha John recollects how Sherin was excited soon after little Shreya’s birth. So right from childhood, the siblings were together all the time. Since Sherin has autism, she has communication problems. Though she prefers communicating better to mother Sangeetha, Shreya remains her best friend.
Now that Shreya has grown up and is able to know better about Sherin’s disability, she is more like a mother to Sherin. Rather, second best after me. Right from childhood, Shreya has accepted Sherin’s disability. Even today, she tries and understands it better. That is the kind of upbringing that we have given her.-Sangeetha John.
According to Sangeetha, bringing up children in an inclusive environment helps them become better and compassionate human beings as they grow up. “Shreya is currently studying in class 8. She understands the learning difficulties that slow learners in her class have. She is compassionate towards them and tries and helps them as much as possible. I’am proud that we could raise Shreya to become such a person”, says Sangeetha.
Looking at her two beautiful daughters, there have been many incidents that have touched Sangeetha’s heart. She is also glad that Sherin, who has a handful of authored books to her credit, has a lot of support from Shreya’s friends and their parents too. Though Shreya is always there with a helping hand to Sherin, the siblings have their moments of disagreements too. “That happens at every home. Sherin and Shreya are always there for each other. But some days I can see them fighting as well”, smiles Sangeetha.
Shreya is the one who draws beautiful paintings for Sherin’s stories, something that she has always loved doing. She recollects many incidents where her sister has been discriminated due to her disability. “In fact, I feel bad for people who knowingly or unknowingly hurt my parents or sister due to Sherin’s disability because they lack awareness. But I choose to ignore that kind of indifference a person shows to someone who has a disability. Right from childhood, I have been there for my sister and will do that always”, says Shreya.
The family based in Kochi loves travelling together and even enjoys their small weekend getaways. Sangeetha and her husband Zachariah shows the world how raising compassionate kids is important for themselves and the society.