Hello, my name is Shiho, a Japanese girl who will be in senior year of university in April, 2018.
As I will start my senior year very soon, I have been seriously thinking about my future path, “What do I really want to do after my graduation?” I never asked the question, “What do I want to do?”, to myself till today because my first concern to make a decision in my life has been my mom, who has been suffering from Eosinophilic Granulomatosis with Polyangiitis (also known as Churg-Strauss Syndrome) since I was very little.
—-For people who does not what Eosinophilic Granulomatosis with Polyangiitis is—-
Eosinophilic Granulomatosis with Polyangiitis is a very rare disease (1 person out of A MILLION) and causes inflammation of small and medium-sized blood vessels. In other words, my mom’s body wages war on itself. It can attack all parts of her body including lungs, digestive organs, brain, and heart. Mainly for her, it atackes her stomach giving her blood vomiting at random (no one can expect when and which part of her body will be attacked) and so much pain at the same time. The only treatment for EGPA is prednisone daily, which is a very strong steroid causing worse effects than good, for example, extreme weight gain, loss of bone density (my mom has broken her bones numerous time including her arms, legs, and ribs) and scarring.
In Japan, the government started giving patients and their families financial aid from just 3 years ago. However, my mom has been suffering from this disease since 1996 and all income my father earned had been paid for my mom’s medical fee.
From this reason, I never asked “What do I want to do?” I knew I could not achieve it if I wished it because I was afraid of suffering my parents with paying additional money for me.
However, now, while I am deepening my knowledge at my university, I have a dream for the first time in my life!!! I WANT TO CONTINUE MY STUDY. I want to deepen my knowledge about gender study and aim to apply master’s degree at University of British Columbia in Canada. However, it costs about $30,000 per year including tuition and living cost. My parents can’t afford. They still have south debt to return from mom’s medical fee in the past.
Can children with a parent suffering from a disease NOT have an access to further education? I hope it’s not true. I want education to be fair for everyone. I hope I can realize my dream with your help. I need your help for my better life, for my family’s future, for dreams of the entire children with a parent suffering from disease.
Thank you so much for reading.