Since her teenage years, migraine never fails to visit our Mama Tata at least once a month or once in two months. She always had paracetamol and mefenamic acid in her pocket wherever she goes.
Our Papa did not really had her checked up simply because few doses of paracetamol and mefenamic acids seem to be relieving her from pain.
Another reason was because a neurologist was just too expensive.
Our Papa Nanding works as a janitor who only have minimum wage (about 7000PHP per month or 135USD per month). His whole month salary can't even afford a CT Scan.
It wasn't until around 2013 when her symptoms became severe and her paracetamol and mefenamic acids are not helping her as much as they did in the past. She tried to ask help from various organizations to give her medical assistance but she came home empty-handed. Until one senator (Chiz Escudero) gave Mama cash assistance for her much-needed CT Scan.
The CT Scan results came and it was heartbreaking for us her children and for our Papa. Our Mama was daignosed of Brain Arteriovenous Malformation (Brain AVM). The doctor adviced that she undergo a Gamma Knife Radiosurgery costing at around 500,000PHP including airfare since there is no Gamma Knife facility in Cebu.
It was too impossible for our family to afford the said amount for the surgery. All of her children are still studying and her husband's salary can only afford so much.
Again, our Mama tried to ask help from everyone she can think of for 2 years. From extended family members, NGOs, government, politicians, etc. She was even given a promise from the office of then vice-president of the Philippines that she will be given assistance after the elections. It gave us and Mama hope but that glimmer of hope ended when we did not hear from the former vice-president's office again.
Every year my Mama's health kept declining due to her experiencing migraine more often. In August 2017 she went into a coma and was brought to a public hospital. She was suffering a severe pmeumonia but did not tell anybody. Large amount of phlegm and her tooth stuck in her airways causing her to pass out. Luckily our Mama fought back from her pneumonia and was ready to come home again.
We spent Christmas and New Year together and it was one of our most memorable holidays as a family.
But my Mama being well was short-lived. Just two days ago, August 10, 2018 she suffered a stroke causing the whole right part of her body to be paralyzed and her speech to be no more.
Our Mama, at the age of 44 years old fell victim to a harsh system that we all are living right now. She tried to knock on the hearts of many individuals and organizations. She tried to have her voice heard but she can only cry so loud. She tried different new places to find help but her illness would not let her. All she ever wanted was to be healed and experience how it is to live a day without pain.
As his eldest son, and in behalf of my siblings and our Papa, I knock on your hearts to help our Mama. I would like to give her what she always wanted, a life free from physical pain. A life free from her brain AVM. She may be bed-ridden because of the stroke she just suffered but how you respond to my Mama's call can change her fate greatly. It can be through your prayers or donations. We need all the help we can gather no matter how small it may be.
God bless us all!!!