A rich woman gets furious after she finds out her daughter is sharing her lunch with a beggar and his dogs. Not long after, she regrets despising him and has a change of heart.
Alicia was enraged. She’d arrived just in time to pick up her daughter from school, but Lia wasn’t among the children streaming out the front gate. Instead, she saw her tiny girl across the street sharing her lunch with a beggar and his two dogs.
Alicia didn’t get out of the car and instead asked her driver to bring Lia to the vehicle. The little girl knew she was in BIG trouble.
“Explain!” Alicia screamed at the top of her lungs once they were home. “What were you doing with a filthy man and those disgusting dogs, Lia? How could you possibly have dared to do something like that?”
“Mommy, I…They were so hungry and sad. I gave them food,” the little girl murmured, avoiding her mother’s eyes.
“Look into my eyes when I’m talking to you, Lia!” screamed Alicia, and Lia quickly looked up at her. “You are not helping them again. Do you understand that?”
“Mommy, but…but they were so sad, and I get sad too when I am hungry….”
“LIA!” Alicia shouted. “NO MEANS NO! Oil and water don’t mix! If you want to help that beggar again, you can go stay with him! Do you want to live on the streets and stay hungry?”
The little girl got scared and started crying. “Sorry, mommy. I won’t do it again. Please don’t leave me on the streets.”
“Good! Now, back to your room!” Alicia ordered, and Lia ran to her room in tears.
The next day when Lia went to school, she saw the beggar and his dogs again. She had promised Alicia she wouldn’t share her food with them, but her kind heart decided otherwise.
“Hey!” she said as she approached the beggar. “My mommy told me not to share my lunch with you, but I can’t do that.”
“It’s ok, little miss,” said the beggar with a kind smile. “You don’t have to go against your mother.”
“You are THAT beggar, aren’t you? What did you do to my girl?” Alicia screamed.
“No, no…I can’t leave you hungry. My teacher says we should help everyone in need. So…I have a plan!” she chirped. She told the beggar to meet her with his dogs behind the school daily and started secretly sharing her lunch with him.
But one day, the beggar was waiting for Lia, and she didn’t show up. He thought she wouldn’t come, so he was about to leave. Just then, one of his dogs bolted across the street.
“Ted!” the beggar cried and ran after his dog. “Come back, boy! We gotta go back!”
But the dog didn’t stop until he reached the bench where Lia lay unconscious. Her backpack was on the ground, and her phone was beside her.
“Oh, little miss!” cried the beggar. “Are you ok? Please open your eyes!” But Lia didn’t wake up.
The beggar dialed 911 immediately. Thankfully, Lia’s phone didn’t have a lock. Soon after, the little girl was rushed to the hospital, and the beggar accompanied her.
He was waiting outside her room, hoping she’ll be fine. Suddenly, he heard a loud voice behind him.
“Where is my daughter? What happened to her?”
He turned around and saw a woman storming into the hospital. He guessed she was Lia’s mother, and well, he was right.
“I can’t believe this!” she screamed at the top of her lungs as she approached him. “You are THAT beggar, aren’t you? What did you do to my girl? And oh my god! You stink!” she complained, holding her nose.
“Ma’am,” the beggar said politely. “I – I didn’t hurt her. She was…”
“Oh, shut up! I know people like you too well! You’re too lazy to work and want to live off the hard-earned money of others! Doctor! Where’s the doctor?”
Alicia was creating a scene at the hospital, and she wouldn’t even listen to the staff members. Then a doctor emerged from Alicia’s room and told her she was barking up the wrong tree.
“This is a hospital, ma’am. Can you please keep your voice down?” he told her rather stiffly. “Your daughter regained consciousness, and she’s doing fine. A case of heat stroke…Your daughter was brought here just in time, and you need to thank this man for that,” he added, pointing to the beggar.
“What? He brought…”
“Yes,” the doctor confirmed. “He saved your daughter’s life.”
Alicia was in tears. She was too embarrassed to even look at the beggar. “I’m sorry,” she whispered. “I – I didn’t know you helped my daughter…”
“It’s ok, ma’am,” said the beggar with a kind smile. “I am glad your daughter is fine. I think you should go see her. I shall take a leave now.”
“Thank you,” she said, holding his hands. “I am sorry for what I said. Lia matters to me more than anything. Thank you for saving her life.”
“It’s all ok. Your daughter has a kind heart, and she helped me a lot. This was the least I could do for her,” the beggar assured Alicia before leaving.
But Alicia felt bad. Very bad. She was so judgemental that she didn’t realize that behind the man with ragged looks was someone kind and needy. Alicia knew she had to make amends.
The next day, the beggar was at his usual spot when a car pulled right beside him. Lia got down from the car and hugged him. “You can live with us now! Mommy said we could take your dogs in too!”
“Hello,” Alicia appeared behind Lia. “I am sorry about how I treated you,” she told the beggar. “I was wondering if you would like to work for us. I wanted to hire someone to drive Lia to school every day. I have another driver, but he’s not always available. I would also provide for your housing.”
The beggar had tears in his eyes. “Thank you,” he said. “I will do my best.”
So the beggar, Fred, and his two dogs, Ted and Sam, got a home and a little friend who loved them. Lia loved spending time with him and his dogs, and well, Alicia had a change of heart. She learned to respect people irrespective of their background and status.
What can we learn from this story?
Never judge a book by its cover. Alicia despised the beggar and realized how wrong she was when he saved Lia’s life.
Kindness begets kindness. Little Lia shared her lunch with her beggar every day and helped him, so when she needed help, the beggar helped her too and saved her life.
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If you enjoyed this story, you might like this one about a mother who mocked a dirty man at a store, only to realize later that the man was her son’s savior.
This piece is inspired by stories from the everyday lives of our readers and written by a professional writer. Any resemblance to actual names or locations is purely coincidental. All images are for illustration purposes only.