Gifts are an item given freely as a token of expressing gratitude, love and friendship. Gifts are remembered for a long time or a life time.

When I was growing up, I wanted to have the best birthday gifts from my mom, brothers and sisters or maybe a friend. But none of them was bothered by my birthday. I was desperately in need of a hearing aid or voice tracer since I have a problem with being hard of hearing.

I had been watching other children celebrating their birthday with their friends and family, but I had never even received a two letter word for my own birthday and it was hurting. I had to accept the fact that I would only be able to celebrate my birthday when I could afford it myself.

When I went to university I made new friends and for the first time I was asked when my birthday was. I could not believe that someone had just asked me such question. Then the birthday arrived and I received a special gift from my best friend. She gave me a small red box and said: “This is my precious gift for you. I hope you will like it”.

I opened it. It was a black Philip voice tracer and a small orange book.

I could have been never envisage that my best friend would give me such a lovely gift. The book was titled “The leadership pill”, by two extraordinary men, Ken Blanchard and Marc Muchnick. The book was not only about leadership, but also had plenty of strategies on how to recognize the goodness in others.

I was really impressed by the story of the author who had been born without eyes, but he overcame his disabilities to live an independent and fulfilling life. He told the story of his emotional battle when he went to school as a child, teen, and young adult. He encouraged everyone to find their life’s purpose and to ignore their inferiority. That book has been one of the best books I have ever read.

The book even helped me to make positive practical changes in my life. I knew that my best friend chose this gift for me because she knew my situation on hearing. I have learned that being disabled is not the end of life, but there are a lot of things you can do.

The voice tracer helped me a lot as a student. I may not attend many meetings, but I listen to lectures each day I attend class. It saves me a lot of time, because I am no longer going after lecturers begging them to explain what I could not hear during the lecture period, but I can always record important ideas and facts that lecturer say.

It also helps with pause and record buttons. These buttons enable me to record notes when needed and pause the recording when the lecturer is not speaking. It also helps me as writer when I am walking in the park and a brilliant idea hits. I can try to remember it, jot the idea down or push a button to record it on my digital recorder. It saves me a lot of time.

Although these were not expensive, I was happy and I keep them as a treasure. However, this was the first and the last gift from my best friend. They still make me feel special and important to her. Whenever I use them, I miss my best friend so much.