We all may have heard the story of Savitri who brought her husband, Satyawan, back to life with the help of purity of character and dedication. You may be sceptical about the verity of the story considering it as a legend, however you can’t turn your eyes away after having known, the exceptionally commendable and immensely respectable act executed by the team of YFS volunteers led by Ms Latha Rao. It is her efforts to a great extent that infused life into Krishna, a boy from an underprivileged family, who was knocking at the door of death persistently.
Little Krishna could have been as mischievous, as playful and as bubbly as Krishna of Vrindavan but as fate would have it, he has been spending much of his childhood helpless, dependant and bed-ridden.
It all began with an unfortunate day, when Krishna suffered from a seizure and was taken to a temple… yes it’s not a typo..his family did take him to a temple considering the illness as an outbreak of an evil spirit. This was a sign of impending storm that was to cause devastating effect on Krishna and emotional trauma to his close ones. The condition didn’t ease and in fact deteriorated during the late hours of the day as he continued to suffer a spate of fits and by some means his family approached Latha Rao. He was rushed to a private hospital, but referred to a super-speciality hospital as the case was suspected to be a severe one. The case was more critical than anyone expected and he had visited four big hospitals on that very day. It was diagnosed that there were blood clots in his brain. Moreover the delay in visiting the doctor on the very first day of seizure had left him partially paralysed in the right side. He was administered anti-seizure drugs which showed some rays of hope, but to last only a few days. Seizures recurred and with greater intensity. It was then found that he suffered brain haemorrhage. He underwent brain surgery immediately to stop the bleeding. The intensive surgery put him into the state of coma for almost a week. He regained consciousness again, but with great difficulty in breathing.
There was an additional complexity in the issue. A bone flap in the skull that was removed at the time of surgery was not replaced to avoid pressure to the brain. Doctors were not optimistic about his survival. Destiny had been too tough on him, who had just learnt to utter few words in his innocent voice. He had been on ventilator support through all these days and further stay was not recommended. In order to do away with the need of ventilator tracheotomy was performed and he was put on oxygen support. Over the period of time, he showed signs of improvement, yet two major concerns were replacement of bone flap and removal of tracheotomy tube, as going home with all such complexities was not safe. Greater hygiene and better care was needed in that case and expecting the same in a slum dwelling is parallel to finding a needle in a haystack. Though success was not achieved in getting rid of tracheotomy tube and replacement of bone flap, he was eventually discharged. It was more than 3 months away from home for him. He was still not able to speak due to the tube on. Food suction, sputum suction, nebulisation were the key areas of support for him among other things. His aunt, Ambika, turned out to be the strength of the family during the hardships and performed her role out of the way. She was the one to take responsibility for all the sophisticated care of him. He is also on physiotherapy sessions for the treatment of paralysis.
Had there not been the support of volunteers, it would have been next to impossible for the deprived family to pursue the treatment, set aside the cost of medical care. Regular counselling with doctors, running between hospitals, diagnosis, medication, moral support to family and what not. It had undoubtedly been an uphill task for Latha and her team. DFS team also played its part by winning free treatment for him and save the family a few lakhs. It is highly unusual to see such a dedication for an unknown boy and when something as rare as this is witnessed, miraculous changes are bound to happen. A salute to Latha and everyone who made this happen.
Krishna has smile on his face again, but the life is full of struggles for him ahead. Nevertheless his survival testifies that even when there are hundreds of odds in life, there is a face of humanity awaiting you. It was in the form of Latha. It may be your turn next to be an angel for another Krishna somewhere.