Humans of New York
(@humansofny)

4,433 posts

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New York City, one story at a time. Currently sharing stories from Indonesia. Now a show on Facebook Watch.

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“It was a problem with my memory. I couldn’t remember things. Everyone else my age was moving forward, and I kept staying behind. My heart was very sore. I loved school. I wanted to be a doctor and a lawyer just like everyone else. I kept asking God: ‘Why is this happening to me?’ I tried my best. I even went to night school. But eventually my teachers said they didn’t want to waste my time. They sent me to a school to learn handwork. That’s where I learned about Special Olympics. I was an angry young man back then. I could not accept my situation. But one day I met Arnold Schwarzenegger when he came to South Africa for an event. I told him my entire story, and he said: ‘Look here, I am the Terminator, but today I am your friend. Listen to me. You are not strong in academics, but that is just one thing. It’s nothing to worry about. You are a very strong man. You can’t hate yourself for the rest of your life. It is time for you to move on.’ From that moment I began to accept myself. I now have everything in life except for academics. I work hard. I have a house. I have a family. I have a career as a soccer coach. My son attends the same school where I work—and he’s very smart. I make sure he does all his assignments. When he struggles, I bring him to his teachers so they can lift him up. I tell him: ‘Tumi, I never finished school. But God is amazing. He has made you strong where I am weak.’” (Special Olympics World Games, Abu Dhabi, UAE)

Chinese food Braised Dongpo Pork #chineseculture #Dongpo Pork #chinese food

China top actress 2018 Xiaotong Guan #Chinese #Chinastars #Chinesebeauty

“I tried to make friends as a child but it never worked out. Every day I’d get bullied. My teachers were nice, but the only kids who would spend time with me were my cousins-- and they were in a higher class. People would call me ‘idiot’ and ‘stupid.’ They’d push me over. I tried to just stare at the floor and not look at people. I felt like jumping out the window. I didn’t want to eat. I became so weak that my mom would feed me with her own hands. I’d talk to the walls of my bedroom. I’d talk to my paintings. I had an imaginary friend named Amanda. She was a fairy. After school I’d close the curtains and sit on the floor and hug my bear and wait for Amanda to come. She was very pretty. She had a beautiful crown. She’d make me laugh, and encourage me, and tell me not to be sad. She’d say ‘good things will happen to you.’ Then one day when I was fourteen, I went to a swim meet with my mother. I was scared of the pool so I just stood along the edge. A woman walked up to me and asked if I was special. Her name was Ronak. She had a beautiful smile. She gave me a hug. I never thought anyone would ever hug me like she did. It felt really good. She looked at me in the eyes, grabbed my hands, and said: ‘Please, please, please join Special Olympics. It will change your life.’ She gave me her phone number. After that day, Amanda never came back.” (Special Olympics World Games, Abu Dhabi, UAE)

Yangleduo is so tasty, can’t help drinking all 6 bottles one-time…#drinking #chineseonlinetrend #meme #amusingpicturesinchina #funnypictures

Humans of New York
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2 Days 16 Hours Ago

(4/4) “Even within the Down Syndrome community, it can be hard to not compare. You’ve found a group of people going through the same thing as you. And suddenly there are gradations. I follow all these people on Instagram that are my age and have Down Syndrome babies. And it’s easy to feel jealous. There are so many differing abilities. Some kids are already walking by now. Then there are the people with Down Syndrome who are revered. Some have testified before Congress. Some are models, and gymnasts, and mothers. And that represents hope for a lot of people. But that’s also not the reality for a lot of people. And that hope can be devastating. What if your kid can’t do those things? What if your kid can’t do Special Olympics? But I’m optimistic by nature. And the only thing I truly need is that she’ll have people who love her. And I mean people who aren’t blood. I want her to be included and have friends and have a community. I want people to say ‘hi,’ and sit with her, and include her. If no boy asks her to prom, I’m going to be devastated. Because I imagine my own life without friends or social connections and it’s so sad. I can’t watch her go through that. And the hardest thing is that these are things I can’t control. All of these experiences are so dependent on other people. I’ll never be able to control how other people see her.” (Special Olympics World Games, Abu Dhabi, UAE)

Chinese style photograph5 #Chinese #snowandredplum #Chinatrends

Humans of New York
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2 Days 18 Hours Ago

(3/4) “My maternity leave was spent bouncing between hospitals, therapists, and the insurance company. I still talk to a doctor every single day of every single week. My daughter has had five surgeries already—two on her heart. I have to fight so much. It took a month of phone calls with the insurance company just to get her a single shot that she needs to stay alive. I hear other parents say it’s going too quickly. But it’s not for me. We live in a different world. My kid doesn’t babble. Doesn’t eat food. Doesn’t crawl. My husband is lucky because he has no idea what the milestones are supposed to be. But I do. I know what a fifteen-month-old should be able to do. Every month I have a mom’s lunch with coworkers. They’re the most fantastic people in the world. But it’s so hard to hear them complain that their kids follow them around and eat everything. My daughter has a feeding tube and doesn’t move. Both my husband and I work full time. We’re so tired. It’s like a bucket that’s being drained from so many holes. But you know what? It’s better than the unknown. It’s better than I imagined it was going to be. Because I’m a parent now. And when you’re imagining all these things, it’s so hard to picture the love. She’s such a happy baby. She gets so proud of herself when she accomplishes something. She never wakes up crying. The one thing that comes easy to her in life is love and happiness.” (Special Olympics World Games, Abu Dhabi, UAE)

Humans of New York
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2 Days 19 Hours Ago

(2/4) “There was an eighty percent chance of miscarriage. I walked around every day not knowing if my daughter was still alive. Every two weeks I went to the doctor to check for a heartbeat. I always asked them to face the ultrasound screen away from me. I couldn’t bear to look. At week twenty-two my placenta began to fail. I was hospitalized at week thirty. The blood flow through the umbilical cord had been reversed. The delivery took three days. Her heartbeat was dropping. The chance of stillbirth was so high. During the emergency C-section, there were thirty people in the room. My husband said that all of them had an ‘oh fuck’ look on their face. The last thing I remember is the gas mask being put over my mouth. Then I woke up asking for milkshakes. They wheeled my entire bed into the NICU to meet my daughter. She’d had oxygen deprivation. Her heart was halfway beating. I was still paralyzed so I couldn’t even sit up to look at her. The nurse took my phone, held it over my daughter, and turned it on ‘selfie mode.’ This is what she looked like when I saw her for the first time.” (Special Olympics World Games, Abu Dhabi, UAE)

Humans of New York
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2 Days 22 Hours Ago

(1/4) “At ten weeks the blood test came back with markers for Down Syndrome. Then the next week we found out there were further complications. There was a grieving process for both of us. We had to realize that things were going to be different. I think it was harder for my husband, even though he didn’t cry as much as me. Sometimes it’s not as easy for men to show emotion. Women tend to band together. I joined so many mom groups. I talked through everything. My husband is a bit of a jock, so I kept sending him videos of Down Syndrome athletes. I wanted him to get excited about the possibilities. We drove to the beach one weekend shortly after the diagnosis, and the entire ride we talked about the future. We talked about how much of our daughter is going to be like any other child. And how we can still be a family. We can still go to Disney World. We can still have adventures. When we arrived at the rental house, I put one of the ultrasound pictures on the fridge. That evening we were sitting on the beach, about to go back inside, when this little girl with Down Syndrome came walking up to us. She was wearing a Minnie Mouse bathing suit. She didn’t say a word. She just stood there—smiling at us.” (Special Olympics World Games, Abu Dhabi, UAE)

Humans of New York
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3 Days 19 Hours Ago

“We’re from the small island country of Vanuatu. I don’t know anything about sports, but nobody else wanted to coach the team. So I volunteered. Special Olympics gave me a list of sports and I chose the long jump. But two of my athletes couldn’t jump. So we moved to the javelin throw. But that was too hard to throw, so now we’re competing in the shot put competition. When I first met Monick, she’d never really left her house before. She couldn’t look me in the eye. And she was afraid of the shot put. She’d drop it on the ground every time I handed it to her. She’d hide her hands behind her back. But I invited her whole family out to train with us. Everyone participated. And that gave her confidence. On days we weren’t training, her mother gave her coconuts and rocks to throw. When it was time to compete, nobody knew if she’d be able to get on the plane. She was so scared. She was crying and clinging to me the entire flight. Once we arrived, we had to drive straight to the stadium for qualifications. Everything was so new for her. She’d never left her island before. The stadium was so big and she had to go out on the field all by herself. On her first throw she forgot everything she learned. She dropped the shot put immediately and the referee raised a red flag for disqualification. But then she looked back at us. She calmed down. She remembered being back on the island with all her family. And she threw it so far on the second throw. When the white flag was raised, we all went crazy. And she won the silver medal.” (Special Olympics World Games, Abu Dhabi, UAE)

Humans of New York
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3 Days 21 Hours Ago

“I’m here to support my older brother. You’d never know he has special needs by looking at him. But what you can learn in one hour, it might take him three or four years. Even though I’m younger, he’s always looked up to me. He writes on my Facebook wall all the time. He’s so proud of my accomplishments. On this trip he’s been sleeping in the bed next to me, but he still texts me that he loves me so much. My mom says he was so happy when I was born. He saw me as an example. Anything that I did—he wanted to do. He learned to feed himself after seeing me eat. He stopped using diapers once I did. It’s getting harder for him to copy me now that we’re adults, but the desire is still there. He wants to drive like me. He wants a girlfriend like me. He wanted a job at the grocery store so badly that he cried during the interview. He wants a family. And a house. And a car. And I want him to get there too. But I’m not sure he realizes how difficult those things will be. There’s another level he has to get past. Cooking is still difficult. And washing clothes. And counting money. We’re just not there yet. So I have to be ready for him to live with me for the rest of my life. And I have to hope that my future family will be OK with that. My brother wants to be independent so badly. And all of us want him to get there. But if he doesn’t, I’m here.” (Special Olympics World Games, Abu Dhabi, UAE)

Humans of New York
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4 Days 22 Hours Ago

“I first met him when he was thirteen years old. He lives in one of the most remote regions of Brunei. You can only get there by river. There’s no running water, no electricity, no utilities. Certainly no special education facilities. He came alone to our city looking for assistance. When I first met him, his trousers were completely torn. He was so small for his age. I’m a special education teacher, so I said to myself: ‘I’m going to help this boy.’ He lived with me for four years. It was the only way he could get training. I coached him on the Special Olympics soccer team. I tried to give him structure. I told him: take a bath every day, go to sleep early, always go to school. The advice had to be continuous because he forgets very easily. But I did everything for him. He became like my son. But he never called me ‘father.’ Always ‘teacher.’ And I never forced him to stay. He’d leave home for a few nights at a time, but he’d always come back. I was really hoping he’d live with me until he got a job. It’s dangerous for him to be on his own because he needs guidance. His family has many bad habits. But last October he turned eighteen, and he chose to go home. He reaches out to me sometimes when his family runs out of food. Or when he needs money. He knows that I can never say ‘no.’ At first it was very difficult. I worried nonstop. I’d always ask his friends: ‘Where is Azril now?’ But I have to accept I’ve done all I can. He has become an adult. When we return from the games, I think it’s time for me to let go.” (Special Olympics World Games, Abu Dhabi, UAE)

Humans of New York
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5 Days 22 Hours Ago

“On a unified team, each athlete is allowed a partner to support them on the court. We make sure every athlete gets a chance to participate and score. We control the tempo. Since basketball games can be chaotic, it can be helpful for athletes to have a teammate who can guide them and keep them calm. Unified sports are wonderful because they allow us to play together as brothers. Giles always used to watch us playing at the local club growing up. He wanted to join us but the level was too high for him. Giles can have problems reaching certain goals. So many times we have to tell him that his goals are not possible. It’s frustrating for all of us. But this time we got to say: ‘Yes Giles, it is possible.’ Every Friday we get in our car together, drive to the river, listen to our favorite songs, and then head to our game. It’s our favorite day of the week.” (Special Olympics World Games, Abu Dhabi, UAE)

Humans of New York
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6 Days 20 Hours Ago

“I have twenty superheroes that I keep in a folder on my phone and I take it out to look at them, and I pretend that I am the leader of an entire superhero team. The whole team is counting on me to get as strong as possible because I am the muscle of the team. Being the biggest is like a way to take charge. It doesn’t even matter if I have super powers because I can use my own true strength, and the barbell is like a type of weapon. It’s important as a leader to always listen to your team. Our whole team decided together that friendship is more important than winning. Nobody will be mad at me if I lose. They don’t care if I bring home a medal. My family and my friends and Coach John and everyone in the Philippines will be proud of me even just for lifting weights.” (Special Olympics World Games, Abu Dhabi, UAE)

Humans of New York
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6 Days 22 Hours Ago

“We are the first female athletes from Saudi Arabia. It makes us feel wow. It’s one of the nicest moments in our life. I have to be happy and positive because I am the basketball team captain. Whenever we make a shot, I clap. I also clap if we miss it. And I clap if the other team makes it. If somebody is sad I tell them don’t be upset my sweet heart. And then I rub their shoulder. This is my teammate Dahwia-- I am her friend and she is my friend. I love her so much. She loves food and we dance together. We blow each other kisses during the game. Yesterday we won. But it doesn’t matter if we lose because at the end we always dance.” (Special Olympics World Games, Abu Dhabi, UAE)