17 years of being sick and I'm currently fighting for my life. | Milaap
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17 years of being sick and I'm currently fighting for my life.

“Karishma is something you experience, not a story you read.”

I work in Marketing, specifically in Social Media and Digital Marketing. On the side, I do a bit of modelling and am a motivational speaker. I am also an Activist for various medical and social causes. I think today, every person needs to be a feminist to re-balance the world.

I have been sick for 16 years with 21 diseases and counting, all incurable. Some of which are Systemic Lupus Erythematosis, CNS Lupus, Vasculitis in the brain, Optic Neuritis, Toxoplasmosis causing complete blindness in one eye, Fibromyalgia, Endometriosis, Adenomyosis, Axonal, Segmental, Lateral and Peripheral Neuropathy, Mononeuropathy, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Osteopenial, Lumbar Scoliosis.

Growing up, I have been subjected to physical, emotional and sexual abuse at the hands of an alcoholic father and other several men. But somehow, I remained a chirpy girl.

As years went on, the abuses got worse as did my health. My condition at that point required me to undergo extensive treatments including chemotherapy, steroids, neurontins etc. at age 16. Becoming fat from the medications and the prolonged absences from school due to my health, led to being bullied by my classmates. Due to the sexual harassment and abuse, my self-esteem and self-confidence took a plunge.

Having all of these happen to me at the same period of time got too overwhelming and I didn’t know how to cope. I was then diagnosed with major depression and I became a self-injurer with suicidal tendencies.
I was taken to various psychiatrists, psychologists and counsellors and was given different anti-depressants, but my downward spiral continued to a point where I hit rock bottom. I then attempted suicide a few times and obviously, failed each time. I eventually got tired of failing and stopped trying.

I went into that hole probably because I couldn’t find something worth fighting for. I started to realize how I had changed as a person. I had become very weak and easily manipulated. I was affected by each word everyone said – including complete strangers. People started to define who I was.

One day, when I looked at myself, I hated what I saw. That’s the day things started to turn around. And slowly, very slowly, I got out of that hole and found the strength to fight the negative energies trying to drag me down.

Unfortunately, I've been spiralling downwards again since Jan 2019. My depression came back and so did the worsening of my physical condition.
When depressed, we start to become anti-social, and our hobbies aren’t as appealing as they used to be. We stop experiencing life and merely exist.
The most common reactions I get when in depression or in flare of any of my invisible illnesses are:
  • It’s all in your head
  • Snap out of it
  • Get out more and make new friends
  • Get over it and stop thinking about it. Etc.
And every time I hear any of these phrases, it gives me the impression that I am to blame.

March and April 2019 were a roller coaster. By May, my anxiety started affecting everyday life. My Fibromyalgia flared up and hasn’t been controllable. By end of May 2019, I was diagnosed with Osteopenia and put on complete bed rest. I tried to work from home but that was getting tough, so I had to apply for unpaid leave.

Come June 2019, the depression, anxiety, and panic attacks got worse. I attempted suicide thrice.

The childhood abuse and trauma led to a diagnosis of Dissociative Identity Disorder and severe PTSD. I've started Ketamine Therapy along with other treatments, while trying to diagnose another auto-immune disorder.

However, since I have no income coming in and am the earner in the family, I now no longer can afford my treatments.

It’s extremely difficult for me to reach out for help, more so financially. But right now, I’ve mustered all my strength to ask all of you to contribute however little you can to help me fight this and rise again.

I believe kindness and compassion have the power to heal and I’m counting on your kindness and generosity to help me heal and get back to living my life and spreading awareness.

Thank You.

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19th June 2020
Dear Supporters,

I have some bad news. Unfortunately, I have deteriorated and been diagnosed with additional conditions. We have also started hormone therapy to try and control the hormone imbalance which has been causing the suicidality. My eye has also continued to deteriorate since my treatments have had to change due to the current scenario. 

In good news, I have taken up a part-time/freelance job.

But in order to continue my treatments, I will still need to depend on your generosity. Since we haven't reached the goal amount and my ability to work is extremely minimal, I am extending the duration of the fundraiser.

Please continue to keep me in your prayers and contribute if you're in a position to.


Thank you,
Karishma 
Dear Supporters,

I have some bad news. Unfortunately, I have deteriorated and been diagnosed with additional conditions. We have also started hormone therapy to try and control the hormone imbalance which has been causing the suicidality. My eye has also continued to deteriorate since my treatments have had to change due to the current scenario. 

In good news, I have taken up a part-time/freelance job.

But in order to continue my treatments, I will still need to depend on your generosity. Since we haven't reached the goal amount and my ability to work is extremely minimal, I am extending the duration of the fundraiser.

Please continue to keep me in your prayers and contribute if you're in a position to.


Thank you,
Karishma 
30th April 2020
Hello dear supporters,

Apologies for the delay in an update, it's been a rough couple of months.

I hope you're all safe and taking all precautions to avoid Covid-19.

Here's a quick update on my health. My left eye was rapidly deteriorating. After doing multiple tests that came out to about INR 60k, we found that the causes are Retrobulbar Neuritis and Retinal Toxicity. In order to save the eye, we immediately started pulse steroids. While the doctors strongly advised admission, lack of funds made me opt to do it as an out-patient. I would go to the hospital everyday and get the IV treatment done. After the course was over, I was advised to take immunosuppressants in order to control the Lupus which has also affected my Liver, Kidneys and Heart. We continued heavy dosages of steroids along with immunosuppressants and other medications.

However, due to Covid-19 and the risk I am at, the medications had to be readjusted. The other complication remains that if I were to contract Covid-19, my chance of survival is very low as I cannot be given the drugs they are currently using to treat the viral infection.

I'm currently on heavy medication to control damage from Lupus and keep the risk of Covid-19 low. I have been home-bound much before the lockdown and will be for a long time after it is lifted. This hampers my plans of resuming work and also increases my treatment costs. I am currently withdrawing part of the funds for medical treatments. 

While I understand, everyone is currently struggling, if you can, I would ask you to again show your generosity and donate so I can continue my treatments.

Stay safe!

Thank you,
Karishma
Hello dear supporters,

Apologies for the delay in an update, it's been a rough couple of months.

I hope you're all safe and taking all precautions to avoid Covid-19.

Here's a quick update on my health. My left eye was rapidly deteriorating. After doing multiple tests that came out to about INR 60k, we found that the causes are Retrobulbar Neuritis and Retinal Toxicity. In order to save the eye, we immediately started pulse steroids. While the doctors strongly advised admission, lack of funds made me opt to do it as an out-patient. I would go to the hospital everyday and get the IV treatment done. After the course was over, I was advised to take immunosuppressants in order to control the Lupus which has also affected my Liver, Kidneys and Heart. We continued heavy dosages of steroids along with immunosuppressants and other medications.

However, due to Covid-19 and the risk I am at, the medications had to be readjusted. The other complication remains that if I were to contract Covid-19, my chance of survival is very low as I cannot be given the drugs they are currently using to treat the viral infection.

I'm currently on heavy medication to control damage from Lupus and keep the risk of Covid-19 low. I have been home-bound much before the lockdown and will be for a long time after it is lifted. This hampers my plans of resuming work and also increases my treatment costs. I am currently withdrawing part of the funds for medical treatments. 

While I understand, everyone is currently struggling, if you can, I would ask you to again show your generosity and donate so I can continue my treatments.

Stay safe!

Thank you,
Karishma
4th March 2020
Dear Supporters,

Thank you all for the support and love.

Milaap is offering a 15% matching on all the funds until the funds last to help raise funds faster towards Karishma's treatment. For every payment that happens, 15% will be added on that payment. For example, every Rs. 1,000 will receive a Rs. 150 matching contribution on the campaign.

You can also help via the following methods:
1. Clicking on the donate now button: https://milaap.org/fundraisers/support-karishma
2. To pay via Paytm (for Android users only) - http://m.p-y.tm/pay-milaap?comment=originId_86725&amount=2500&amount_editable=1
3. For UPI payment: givetomlpkarishma@yesbankltd https://milaap.org/fundraisers/support-karishma/upi_deeplink (You can send money to this ID using BHIM, PhonePe or any UPI app)

A big thank you to the ones who have already donated. Please do pray for Karishma's speedy recovery. Please do share the campaign with your friends and family.

Thanks
Dear Supporters,

Thank you all for the support and love.

Milaap is offering a 15% matching on all the funds until the funds last to help raise funds faster towards Karishma's treatment. For every payment that happens, 15% will be added on that payment. For example, every Rs. 1,000 will receive a Rs. 150 matching contribution on the campaign.

You can also help via the following methods:
1. Clicking on the donate now button: https://milaap.org/fundraisers/support-karishma
2. To pay via Paytm (for Android users only) - http://m.p-y.tm/pay-milaap?comment=originId_86725&amount=2500&amount_editable=1
3. For UPI payment: givetomlpkarishma@yesbankltd https://milaap.org/fundraisers/support-karishma/upi_deeplink (You can send money to this ID using BHIM, PhonePe or any UPI app)

A big thank you to the ones who have already donated. Please do pray for Karishma's speedy recovery. Please do share the campaign with your friends and family.

Thanks
Rs.0 raised

Goal: Rs.100,000

Beneficiary: Karishma info_outline