“Our child’s first few words were only cries of pain. He had boils all over his body, high fever and his hands were swollen from all the injections. All he said was ‘Amma, it’s paining I don’t want this pain’ but chemotherapy was the only thing keeping him alive. Now, it’s not enough. He needs a bone marrow transplant to finally beat cancer. We have 15 days to save him, but after years of treatment and medical bills, we’re buried in debt and have nothing left to give him the life-saving transplant. We will lose our only child to cancer without urgent help.” – Lakshmi, Mahantesh’s mother
Cancer has taken away Mahantesh’s (4) childhood. He has learnt to live the endless needles and medicines, and now Mahantesh is too weak to even cry out in pain. When he looks at his parents with his pleading eyes, Lakshmi can’t help but break down. Lakshmi and Kumar can’t remember a time when their child hasn’t been in pain. Mahantesh’s only chance to beat cancer is a bone marrow transplant which he needs in the next two weeks to survive.
Mahantesh has been in excruciating pain because of cancer for two years nowWhen Mahantesh was born, Lakshmi and Kumar took home a healthy baby boy. Little did they think that in two years, their son would be fighting death. Now as Lakshmi sits by his bedside, she remembers her son’s first birthday – a milestone they celebrated with their entire family. But their happiness is now a distance memory. Ever since he was diagnosed with cancer two years ago, they’ve lived their lives shuttling between home and hospital.
“He has spent his last two birthdays in the hospital. Our son has never really had a childhood. Cancer has not only taken away his smile and laughter but has shattered all our dreams of watching him grow up. When he was diagnosed with cancer the first time, we were shocked, but we found a way to go on. Just when we thought he had finally beat cancer, it relapsed. His little body was still recovering, he had just started sitting up on his own. We had exhausted everything we had on his first treatment. We don’t see a way out of this misery now.”
Only an urgent bone marrow transplant can save him from cancerMahantesh looks at children his age going to school and asks his mother when he will get to go. All he wants is a normal childhood, free from the pain he’s been living with every day. His parents buy him notebooks and colours to distract him, but it’s only momentary. Mahantesh has little energy left to even draw now. He has completed his first cycle of chemotherapy and needs a bone marrow transplant at the earliest. If delayed any further, they will lose their only child to cancer.
His desperate parents are neck deep in debt and can’t afford his life-saving treatment any longerKumar is a tailor who earns barely 5,000 per month. He used everything he earned to repay loans he took for treatment the first time, but before he could pay back those loans, he’s in debt once again. Mahantesh’s condition is deteriorating every day. Kumar and Lakshmi have knocked on the doors of many neighbours and relatives, but 45 lakhs is more than what they will ever be able to afford.
“My husband has called and met everyone we know to find a way to get him the transplant. We’ve already delayed the treatment once because we couldn’t afford it. Now, he has just 15 days to get it. This is his only chance to beat cancer. We can’t save our son without help.”