Letters About Literature National Winners 2013
National Honor Winner, Level 1: Rose Yuanhong Benas
Dear Mr. Mosher,
Your book, A Mother’s Ordeal: One Woman’s Fight Against China’s One-Child Policy, touches me at the core of my being. It helps me understand all that my Birth Mom suffered and endured to give me the gift of life. Everyone knows me as Rose, but on the other side of the world, I am known as Fu Yuanhong. Fu means good fortune and Yuanhong means everlasting rainbow. In the Year of the Snake, I was born in the Jiangxi Province in China, on March 11th, 2001. I believe, in my heart, that when my Birth Mom named me, Yuanhong – Everlasting Rainbow, she was making a promise to me. She was saying, “I love you; even though we will be separated across a great ocean and may never see each other, my love for you is everlasting.”
If my Birth Mom had been forced to have an IUD inserted or been sterilized, I would never have been conceived. If she had been dragged to an abortion clinic against her will, I would never overcome tremendous adversity to give me the gift of life, when outside forces were urging her to destroy my life. My Birth Mom did something very courageous when she was forced to give me up. She placed me by a government building, silently, but her actions spoke volumes. Her bold actions screamed: “What right do you have to separate a mother from her child? Now, look at my daughter; how can you not value this life?!” When I was found, I was brought to an orphanage for one day, and then placed in a foster family until I could be adopted. On January 27, 2002 at the age of ten and a half months, I was adopted and then traveled to the United States. I come from two very different worlds.
My life is truly an adventure and your book is a source of inspiration. It helps me realize the preciousness of life. I have wonderful parents and go to the best school in the world; I dream of being an author. If I had remained in the rural areas of the Jiangxi Province, I would be spending my life working in the rice fields, and probably would not be receiving very much education. Some people might point out that due to this policy, my life is better, now. What about all the baby girls who have been aborted, abandoned and are still in orphanages? How can I ignore all these injustices and close my eyes to all the human suffering and simply say, “Well, my life is better?!” There is a wise saying that states, “The greatest gift God has given us is life, and the greatest gift we give God is what we do with our life.” Your book clearly reveals how China’s One-Child Policy is a complete violation of God’s laws for it destroys human life and devalues females. Just like my name, Yuanhong – which means Everlasting Rainbow, God found a way to take my sad tragic story and turn it into a rainbow of hope and promise. Our Creator has a special plan for me, so I will serve God with my whole heart and soul.
Rose Yuanhong Benas