My mother would spread a sheet on the ground and clean up after I was done: Anmol’s story

My mother carried me in her arms and brought me to MALC. At 16 years of age, I weighed 25 kgs. I didn’t feel like looking at myself in the mirror because I couldn’t recognize myself; I was purely bones with no flesh. My little niece and nephew would run away as soon as they saw me. My hair started falling and I grew very weak. I used to find it difficult in using the washroom; my mother used to spread a sheet on the ground and would clean up after I was done. I would lose consciousness and would awaken to neighbors’ stares and my mother’s teary face. She would give me a drink; sugar mixed with water, as we couldn’t afford juices. My father, a labourer, was at home after having a bypass and with 8 more siblings to feed, our financial situation was constrained. There was excruciating chest pain along with weight loss and night sweats. One evening, a person told my mother to take me to MALC; that night my mother didn’t get a wink of sleep as she was anxious for me to get relief. When my TB diagnosis was confirmed, things started gradually improving, once I started my treatment. The encouragement by the doctor and staff boosted my confidence. There were no long queues and every visit went smoothly.

Times have changed now, as you can see I’ve gained weight. My niece and nephew love to embrace me. I have shoulder length hair which my aunties often mistaken for a wig. I recently gave my IX standard final examinations; I want to become a nurse one day. My mother and I, referred many people to the Centre as we were quite content with the treatment. My mother says to the people “my daughter got a second life; I feel good telling others about the Centre.”

Written by: Sharon Braganza, Assistant Manager – IPD