“I have been single-handedly taking care of my widowed mother, my younger brother and his family ever since my father passed away a few years ago. Owing to my modest income, my wife and I were always happy to make many sacrifices to make sure that our family’s collective needs were met before ours, and ensure that the household ran smoothly. We could not save money as a result. Now, our baby girl, who came into this world earlier than expected, is struggling to survive and we are left with nothing to save her.”-Shivakumar, father.
Shivakumar had taken such good care of his wife, her unexpected delivery complications left him in utter disbeliefWhen Shivakumar learnt that he was going to be a father after a long wait of 6 years, he vowed to take good care of his wife. He made sure she had nutritious food and fruits to eat and even went beyond his means to take her to a private hospital for check-up
. Harshini also had what one could call a dream pregnancy – she did not face any discomfort from vomiting or feel any giddiness as other women usually do. Everything was going to plan until one day, at the end of 6 months of pregnancy, Harshini experienced bleeding unexpectedly.
“I rushed her to the nearest government hospital as soon as she complained of bleeding – I prayed that nothing bad should befall my unborn child. The doctors advised complete bed rest for the next few months. But that night, she bled again and so we were told to go to a better hospital in Hyderabad. As soon as we reached there the next day morning, we were told that her cervix was 90% dilated, and she’d have to give birth soon or both mother and child won’t survive. I begged the doctor to save both of them and he did – except my child was taken straight to the incubator instead of my arms.”-Shivakumar, with tears in his eyes.
Their little fighter is battling many birth-related problems and needs to spend weeks in the hospital to recover
In addition to extremely low birth weight (710 gms) and breathing troubles, Harshini’s baby girl was also fighting severe bacterial infection and low blood pressure along with low platelet count. She is on low oxygen support currently and has a high chance of survival. But Shivakumar has run out of money completely and his baby girl will not survive for even a minute outside the hospital if he were to discontinue treatment – Shivakumar hopes that things don’t come to that, but he is helpless. Harshini cannot help but cry when she sees her child struggling every minute.
“Seeing my baby covered in tubes from head to toe, encased in a glass box makes me tear up every time. I try to spend as much time as possible near her, and touch her tiny leg telling him that she will be fine soon. Every day I ask the doctors if there is improvement in his condition – it gives me hope when they say that he is getting better with time.”- Harshini, mother.
Unable to go to work, Shivakumar borrowed money to keep his son’s treatment going but has exhausted everything now
Shivakumar works as a small-time pharmacist in a free-of-cost ambulance service in Hyderabad. He was barely making enough to meet the needs of his joint family. Now things have become much worse as he has not been able to go to work for the past 20 days. He had to borrow a huge amount from friends and even superiors to pay bills at the hospital till now.
He has already exhausted those funds and has no other way to help his daughter now.
“I have been able to pay Rs 5 lakhs for my baby’s treatment, but will need more as he needs prolonged care and each day’s charges amount to more than Rs 40,000. My wife and I come to hospital twice every day from our home that is 15 km away, and I cannot even afford to pay transportation charges. We even starve to save money on certain days, but we don’t mind it as we just want our son to make it. Please help us.”-Shivakumar.
How you can help
Shivakumar and Harshini’s premature baby girl is suffering many birth-related complications including low birth weight and respiratory distress along with severe bacterial infection and low platelet count. Shivakumar, a pharmacist who has not been able to go to work, is struggling to balance household responsibilities along with saving his only baby. Your support can ensure that Shivakumar succeeds, and is able to take his baby girl home.