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The Story of Eika Nishio

Because It’s Only One Life...  The Story of Eika Nishio

The movement that promotes Only One Life – Live It! originally started from words a girl named Eika Nishio left behind. She lost her right arm and passed away at the age of sixteen due to bone cancer. Eika left behind many drawings, poems, and other great masterpieces. We can still feel her strong and positive will to live through all of her work. We would like to introduce Eika’s amazing life little by little.

Eika Nishio

Episode 1: Birth of Eika

Born on April 3, 1991, as the first daughter of the Nishio Family in Hakodate, Hokkaido. Her parents were very happy about their first child and loved her dearly, as it took a long time for them to be blessed with a child. Eika grew up being greatly loved by her parents.

She loved music and singing and also played the electronic organ at a musical recital. She even enjoyed playing sports and being active. She took swimming lessons during the six years of her elementary school. When she was in fifth grade, she was able to swim faster than her father. She was even on the varsity tennis team when she was in junior high school.

When she was in 7th grade, she was deeply touched by a TV program called Until The Battery Runs Out. This program was about children who were suffering and fighting against cancer. A month later, she bought a book called Children Seeding (Tanemaku Kodomotachi), which was a collection of essays written by children also fighting cancer. She cried bitterly after reading that book, and was deeply touched by the stories.

The tears she shed were not only from sympathy. She strongly reflected upon the fact that she did not do anything to help other people even though she lived a healthy life.

When she was in junior high school in Yokohama, she wrote a report on that book which was placed in an essay contest and published in her school magazine. The following is her actual essay.

When Eika was born

First Day of Elementary School

Playing the Electronic Organ at a Concert

With Tennis Club Members

Impression of Children Seeding Eika Nishio

Actual essay in the school magazine.The school magazineThis book is about children who experienced cancer and how they fought against their illness.
The reason why I chose to read this book was because I watched a TV program called Until The Battery Runs Out. This program was about children with cancer and I was so touched by the story of this girl’s warm heart. One day, I stopped at a bookstore and found this book called Children Seeding.
The most impressive thing was the words which the children left us behind. Those words were, “Please don’t feel sorry for children with handicaps. I feel sorry for people who think this way.”
I used to look at handicapped people from a distance and thought it was none of my business. But now, after hearing these words, I realized how cruel I was to have such terrible thoughts and felt really bad.
I was also touched by the children overcoming their hurdles and their kindness towards their parents. Even though these children were handicapped, they still worried about their parents.
I realized that good things would happen to those who may have handicaps and have gone through hardships as long as they stay positive. Currently there are people overcoming hardships. There are still many people who commit crime because they think life is difficult. As it was written in the book, if everyone interacted with each other having feelings of love and took matters more seriously, then our world filled with crime would change into a better place.
I thought to myself, “Is there anything I could do to help them?” And then I came up with an idea that I should start doing something small. If, one day, everyone in this world could do that one small thing, our world would become such a wonderful place.

I have a favor to ask everyone. Please don’t give handicapped people weird looks. I believe that every one of us is equal. Also, please don’t be selfish and have a warm heart and be considerate of others.

However, I have not put my idea into practice yet. I am willing to do it little by little. I write this as I wish everyone in the world could smile happily...

Eika decided to start doing something small for the sake of others. The first thing she did was pick up trash on the way back to her house from school. She did it every day without fail.

Within three months, she found that she also had a serious illness...