Every Wednesday we shine the spotlight on one of our zombie kids in an effort to cut through the negative stereotypes that abound regarding zombification. Madison, a toddler, has been a resident here since our earliest days. Much of her story remains unknown to us as we woke up one morning to find her, strapped in a shopping cart seat, on our doorstep. She was loved. We know that because her clothes were clean, her hair adorned with a big pink bow, and a laminated name tag hung from her shirt proclaiming, “Hi, I’m Madison.”
Whether it was her young age or our suspicion that she was never put out to fend for herself as a zombie, Madison was non-aggressive and eager to please from the first day. She would sit quietly in her high chair during feedings, eyes wide open and interested in the meal, but never lunging at the food or noisily clamoring for it. Her table manners were an inspiration as, early in our existence, we weren’t entirely sure of the capabilities of these children to exhibit self-control or good table manners. She became the standard by which we measured the progress of our other children. Without her and her outgoing, playful attitude we may have never realized the freedom we could provide these children in a secure environment.
Over the Christmas holidays, Madison became fixated on our janitorial staff’s’ cleaning carts. She started to follow the housekeepers and mimic their behavior. Armed with an imaginary dust rag or mini mop, she’d cheerfully play at wiping down counters, cleaning floors, and washing windows. After a few days, the housekeepers cut down a mop for her and gave her a small carry-all filled with sponges and rags. Each morning they would wheel in their cleaning carts and present Madison with her supplies. Her squeals of glee filled the common area and, as the days went on, they provided her with cans of furniture polish and bottles of window cleaner. Amazingly enough, she used each of these gifts appropriately, never using the furniture polish on the windows or the window cleaner on the wood. For Christmas, the housekeeping staff chipped in and purchased Madison a cleaning outfit like theirs. Her smile when she opened that present warmed the room. While the other children opened their presents and filled up on our seasonal brain treats, Madison slipped into her new uniform and cleaned up after them. At the end of the day, despite the Holiday festivities, our common area was spotless. Madison’s decision to slip two cleaning pads over her shoes earned her a new nickname, our little Roomba.
The recent loss of a housekeeper due to retirement left us wondering how we would fill the gap as many people are too fearful to work with our zombie child population. Surprisingly the housekeeping staff asked that we not replace their missing member, they were content to keep Madison on as part of the team. The money we’ve saved from this small change freed up the funds to add ten additional beds to our facility. Madison deserves the credit for allowing us to expand and give more zombie children a normal childhood.
Remember, we feed the zombie children so you don’t have to.
Zombie Emergency Relief Organization