Lakshmi is a 2 year old Indian girl who was born with with four arms and four legs.
A news report says that she "was born joined at the pelvis to a 'parasitic twin' that stopped developing in her mother's womb. The surviving fetus absorbed the limbs, kidneys and other body parts of the undeveloped fetus."
Sparsh Hospital in Bangalore decided that Lakshmi deserved to live a normal life.
A team of 30 doctors joined forces and successfully completed a 24 hour surgery on Lakshmi and have described the results as better than expected.
The team worked through the night "reconstructing Lakshmi's lower body ... transplanting a good kidney ... from the twin (and also) ... used tissue from the twin to help rebuild the pelvic area, one of the most complicated parts of the surgery."
Dr. Sharan Patil (pictured with Lakshmi) who led the team said the operation went "wonderfully well".
Lakshmi's parents were not able to afford the $$625,000 for the surgery but Sparsh Hospital decided to do it free of charge.
This is a wonderful story about the will of humanity. I recognize that there is also some professional advertizing beneath the story. Still, I cannot but believe that most of us will hold onto the miracle that the surgery represents for Lakshmi and her parents.
The matter of hope and humanity struck me in this story after I looked at the picture of this teenage gunman who killed 8 people at a school in southern Finland today.
I do not intend to balance these stories for any other reason than to contest the notion that humanity can be so easily described as "overrated" or worthless.
Lakshmi's story is uplifting. And when I look at her family in this picture, and rest the story in my hands, I am hopefull. How about you?