‘Akka, akka home!’ My son says to me in broken words, with tears in his eyes. He wants to go home to his sister and play, but he can’t. He is afraid. Afraid of the hospital he is in, of the intravenous tubes in his body, of the unimaginable pain he suffers from. My 3-years-old, Ruthvik, is suffering from Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia. All I can do is feel helpless. What can a bus conductor’s meager salary do for his treatment?
Earlier, when I used to be at work, my wife would call me to tell me the new words that Ruthvik would try to pronounce. These phone calls used to make my day. However, since July, these pleasant calls have been replaced by frantic calls informing me about his blood report fluctuations. She is in a constant state of fear. I am trying my level best to help my wife and son get out of this trauma. Ruthvik has already completed 5 chemotherapy cycles and needs an additional 4 cycles.
My name is Srinivasa Gowda. I earn Rs. 15,000 a month and have 4 family members to fend for including me. Ruthvik’s medical treatment has devastated us not only emotionally but monetarily as well. Although I’m facing a debt, I’ve managed to gather Rs. 12 lakh and exhausted it on the 5 chemo cycles. I still have to gather the amount required for the rest of the chemotherapy cycles, the approximate cost of which is Rs. 10 lakh. One life-saving injection of Hemsyl costs me a staggering Rs. 49,000, which is unaffordable for someone like me.
It all began with a fever, which didn’t subside even after giving him the prescribed medicines. Soon, his neck started swelling. We rushed him to the doctor. There was a severe drop in his platelets and our doctor advised to get a complete diagnosis done at HCG hospital. It was here that we received the devastating news – my son had Blood Cancer.
At the moment, Ruthvik has to undergo blood tests frequently. Any fluctuation in the test would leave him back with a dreadful treatment on the hospital bed. Even though he’s just 3, he’s learnt that removing of the intravenous connection means no treatment for him on that particular day. Once it’s removed, he gives a wide smile. I wish to see him smile like that for life. I wish to see the hope at the end of this very long and dark tunnel.
Srinivasa Gowda is struggling to support his son’s cancer treatment. You can help him by donating generously to his fundraiser.
Ruthvik has been in the hospital since July. He loves watching cartoons and his love for cartoons has helped him survive this treatment. I have downloaded all his favourite cartoons on my phone, every time he needs to take a painful injection I divert his attention from the pain by showing him those cartoons. Any inability to pay for his treatment could cost us his life. I’ve managed to get help from my friends, however Rs. 10 lakh is staggering and I need your help.
You can help Srinivasa by donating to his fundraiser on Ketto here.
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