HOPE IN DESPAIR: Fighting and Surviving Cancer

Today I got three voice messages from her. She is staying in Budhanilkanta with her child now. She is enjoying her life as an English and French teacher and of course, as a mother. She wants to meet me in the near future and still is thankful for my concern and what she says for my “unknown presence” in her life.

Aug. 17, 2017, 12:50 p.m. Published in Magazine Issue: VOL.11, NO.03,August 25, 2017 (Bhadra 09,2074)

Yoga day is celebrated each year on June 21 and I had the opportunity to attend Manisha Koirala’s talk program in Kathmandu on the occasion. She shared her experience, and narrated how yoga supported her psychically and emotionally when she was diagnosed with cancer. Meditation and yoga helped improve her situation. She gradually emerged as a positive thinker. She was able to gain lost will power once again. She thinks she is leading a life better than in the pre-cancer days. Now she is enjoying, what she calls a “Beautiful life”. After her delivery followed by the questionnaire round, audience wanted to know less about Yoga and more about her career and her new movie: Dear Maya.

“Maya” is a common word in various languages with different meanings. I came across this name after the earthquake in 2015 more grippingly. A lady was trying to sell her household goods as soon as possible and wanted to move to India with her toddler. Her name was Maya. I was interested in the goods she was selling, so, we became friends via Facebook.  However, before I met her, her goods were sold out. We are still in touch on social media where she posts her child’s pictures. One day, she posted a picture of herself in the hospital with her child and a bald head. She was diagnosed with cancer and was going through painful treatments. I was shocked for another reason as well. She had a toddler’s responsibility and I could not stop my concern for her. In a get together, I mentioned Maya to my friends and I told them about her story. One of my friends turned out to be a former student of her. She told me about Maya, about how she came from a lower middle class family in India where she struggled for her education. As a language teacher, she may have gotten the chance to visit different states around the world however; her love for Nepal made her stay here. She was happy to be a mother , late in life though. She was in her early 40s when she became the mother.

 But all that changed after she was diagnosed with cancer.  Life has changed for her, she got diagnosed as a cancer patient , being a single mother made the case  harder . It is difficult to handle a toddler  along with having to continue being a bread earner, doing the routine house hold jobs as usual.  After few months she posted a video where she shared her feeling as a survivor of cancer patient and a toddler’s mother. She profusely thanked God and the friends who supported her which she said gave her the strength that enabled her to  enjoy each passing  day as a blessing . She broke down in the video, where she said, once she comes out from hospital she will work to survive and to save some amount for her child. It was painful yet commendable to see a lady, going through her third stage of cancer while hoping to do better and raise her child by herself. Some months later, I could not see her posts and videos on Facebook; I was worried and wrote a message in her inbox. After some days, she sent me a reply full emotion. She mentioned that she took a break from social media from some months and I was the first one who showed concern for her and she was thankful and happy as her health was getting better than before. I was glad to know that she was alive and still has the strong willpower to come out from physical and emotional phase of life. Today I got three voice messages from her. She is staying in Budhanilkanta with her child now. She is enjoying her life as an English and French teacher and of course, as a mother. She wants to meet me in the near future and still is thankful for my concern and what she says for my “unknown presence” in her life.

 Maya was diagnosed with a similar disease as Manisha Koriala. They belonged from different social statuses and economical backgrounds but still both got to know that life and health are more important than other materialistic things in the world where people forget to live their life to catch unlimited desires. In the Hour of crisis, especially life threatening circumstances, it is the will , spirit and right decision , rather than the material condition that matters more positively. Ends

 

                  

 

Abhilasha Sharma.jpg

Abhilasha Sharma

Sharma is a researcher of social issue. She can be reached at abhilasha.peace@gmail.com

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