When I entered Kamladevi’s home in the outskirts of Thane city, she was fondly putting her little grandson to sleep. The environment, however, felt tense. Her daughter-in-law Maithili tried hard to conceal how worried she was. Her worry, however, did not create any dent in her hospitality. She offered me chai and biscuits and laid out a mattress for me to sit on. Kamladevi had undergone surgery for removing a malignant tumor in her gall bladder using the loan from Milaap. She has been suffering from cancer for the past 6 months. However, the second tumor located in her pancreas has been declared too risky to remove surgically. Chemotherapy has been ruled out as her age and previous surgeries can adversely affect her recovery. “She will be in incredible pain,” exclaims Maithili, “and the doctors have advised us against it.” Vinod Mourya, the borrower and her son, is trying hard to make her life as comfortable as he can. He works at a pathology and his life has seen a lot of struggle and financial upheavals. But he worked very hard in the city and is now trying to feed his family of 5 with his wage. He even moved homes from his chawl (a community system of houses where families live in 1BHKs or less and more often than not, share a public toilet) in Thane to the a slightly larger home on the outskirts to provide his mother with more hygienic conditions to live in. “I lost my younger brother and my father to cancer. And now my mother is also suffering from this disease. We are trying to make things as comfortable for her as possible. But she is an incredibly strong woman. She does not show us how much pain she’s enduring,” says Vinod. Indeed, Kamladevi looks physically weak, but speaks with conviction and courage when confronted with this situation. “What has to happen, will happen. We can just try to do our best. I’m glad I could at least get a chance to fight and remove one of the tumors.” Vinod and Kamladevi have expressed gratitude for the loan given to them and the support by their lenders. Here’s to saluting the fighting spirit of Kamladevi and her family..