Stories From Iran: Meet Sima And Tarane

“What is my greatest dream for my daughter? With a little laugh, Sima replied, “To be human, of course.”

There is nothing I want for Tarane, nothing more important in life than to show kindness to others, for her to treat the world with understanding and respect. That is what being fully human means.”

Her words echoed across the pediatric ward full of children and mothers waiting to receive a lifesaving heart surgery this week. These were not easy words to say with a sick child on her lap. There are no heart transplants in Iran, which means Tarane’s life isn’t secure. It would be natural for Sima to zero in on her daughter without noticing anyone else. Instead, she is looking at others and hoping her daughter will grow up to show kindness to them.

Sima lives in a place full of challenges, and those challenges could tempt her to go numb toward others. She decided to reject the bitterness and self-concern that grows when there isn’t enough to go around. She is a fierce mother who loves her daughter. She decorates Taranes’ hospital bed with enough pink to ice a cake, topped off with Barbies on each of the corners. She is reminding Princess Tarane to see beauty as she walks through hard things this week.

Sima knows what kind of daughter she’s going to raise —she can see Tarane’s future. Together, our team is going to mend her heart so she can run into that future and show the world what one person can do when they choose to be fully human.

Walking up and down the stairs after surgery meant the world to Tarane. Finally, her heart was able to keep up with her curious, four year-old need to explore and climb. Her eyes lit up as she climbed up and down with Sima trailing behind.