God Opened a Door Through Strangers

Jane, 60, had long forgotten all about menstrual bleeding, until one day in March of 2019.

“I was shocked and even embarrassed to go buy sanitary pads at my age,” Jane says.

But the bleeding turned out to be nothing like she had experienced before during her menses. The bleeding was so heavy that it quickly soaked through the sanitary pads, so much so that it interfered with her normal routine. It was painless and so for the first few days, she did not worry about it.

Jane Wanjiku Manga.jpgBut when the flow did not reduce by day five,  her gut feeling told her that something was not right. At the same time, her youngest son, who is also an adult, was unwell. Jane, a widow, worked as a farmhand. Her salary could only afford medical care for one person. She opted to first take her son for treatment before attending to her bleeding situation.

It was only after her son was well that she went to a nearby clinic. By then, it had been three months of nonstop bleeding. It would dry up for a few days but resume again. At the hospital, a nurse sat Jane down and firmly told her,

Jane Wanjiuku Manga, 60, had long forgotten all about menstrual bleeding, until one day in March of 2019.

“I was shocked and even embarrassed to go buy sanitary pads at my age.” Jane says.  She had, out of the blues started bleeding that afternoon.

But this bleeding turned out to be nothing like she had experienced before during her menses. The bleeding was so heavy that it quickly soaked through the sanitary pads, so much so that it interfered with her normal routine. It was painless and so for the first few days, she did not worry about it.

But when the flow did not reduce by day five, as was the norm with her monthly period decades back, her gut feeling told her that something was not right. At the same time, her youngest son, who is also an adult, was unwell. Jane, a widow, worked as a farmhand. Her salary could only afford medical care for one person. She opted to first take her son for treatment before attending to her bleeding situation.

It was only after her son was well that she went to a nearby clinic. By then, it had been three months of nonstop bleeding. It would dry up for a few days but resume again. At the hospital, a nurse sat Jane down and firmly told her,

“Do not take this lightly. You must go to a main hospital and speak to a doctor. This is not period bleeding.”

“What is it then?” Jane asked the nurse, who hesitated but insisted that Jane must see a doctor as a matter of urgency. Jane insisted to know what the nurse thought her issue was. “I cannot say without a proper diagnosis. But it looks like the early stages of cancer.” Jane broke down. Cancer was not an illness she had associated with this bleeding.

“I’d rather have HIV than cancer!” She was distraught. It took over an hour to counsel her and she calmed down. She is grateful that the nurse was patient with her.

At the referral hospital, she underwent different tests. She was diagnosed with cancer of the cervix, stage one. Her doctor told her that she had to start treatment immediately, which included surgery.

“How much is treatment?” Jane asked, concerned that the treatment was more than over the counter pills. She had exhausted all the money she had from her salary and from her friends. When she got the quotation, she had another breakdown.

“You see, I have nothing to my name, no property and my salary is less than ten thousand.” Jane told the doctor. She had signed up with the National Hospital Insurance Fund (NHIF), but the card had not matured. The hospital gave her a discount and booked her for surgery. Unknown to her, her friends pooled together and raised the funds, which paid for the surgery.

But she was once again distraught to learn that there were chemotherapy and radiotherapy treatments that she had to undergo, in addition to the medications and the iron rich diet that she was prescribed.

She was referred to MP Shah Hospital. But Jane was not able to raise the money needed to do more tests and start her treatment. After three months, the doctor called her and told her that she had to start treatment, otherwise her condition would deteriorate. By then, her employer had dismissed her. Jane got into a depression. She locked herself in her small house and waited for death to take her.

It is her friend, who after unsuccessfully trying to fund raise swore that she would find help for Jane, whatever it took. She got Jane out of bed and they went for treatment with the little money that they had. It was while at HCCG that Jane got to learn about Faraja Cancer Trust. She did not hesitate to apply for financial assistant.

She was overjoyed when Faraja extended financial assistant. “God opened a door through strangers. If I remember how my employer dismissed me, telling me that I was on my way to death, I know that God lives.” An emotional Jane says. She says that she has no words to express her gratitude to Faraja for being there for her at her hour of need.

“I am so grateful. Thank you, thank you Faraja!”

 

“What is it then?” Jane asked the nurse, who hesitated but insisted that Jane must see a doctor as a matter of urgency. Jane insisted to know what the nurse thought her issue was. “I cannot say without a proper diagnosis. But it looks like the early stages of cancer.” Jane broke down. Cancer was not an illness she had associated with this type of bleeding.

“I’d rather have HIV than cancer!” She was distraught. It took over an hour to counsel her and she calmed down. She is grateful that the nurse was patient with her.

At the referral hospital, she underwent different tests. She was diagnosed with uterine cancer, stage one. Her doctor told her that she had to start treatment immediately, which included surgery.

“How much is the treatment?” Jane asked, concerned that the treatment was more than over the counter pills. She had exhausted all the money she had from her salary and from her friends. When she got the quotation, she had another breakdown.

“You see, I have nothing to my name, no property and my salary is less than ten thousand,” Jane told the doctor. She had signed up with the National Hospital Insurance Fund (NHIF), but the card had not matured. The hospital gave her a discount and booked her for surgery. Unknown to her, her friends pooled together and raised the funds, which paid for the surgery.

But she was once again distraught to learn that there were chemotherapy and radiotherapy treatments that she had to undergo, in addition to the medications and the iron-rich diet that she was prescribed.

She was referred to MP Shah Hospital. But Jane was not able to raise the money needed to do more tests and start her treatment. After three months, the doctor called her and told her that she had to start treatment, otherwise her condition would deteriorate. By then, her employer had dismissed her. Jane got into a depression. She locked herself in her small house and waited for death.

It is her friend, who after unsuccessfully trying to fundraise,  swore that she would find help for Jane, whatever it took. She got Jane out of bed and they went for treatment with the little money that they had. It was while at HCG-CCK Cancer Center that Jane got to learn about Faraja. She did not hesitate to apply for financial assistant.

She was overjoyed when Faraja extended financial assistant. “God opened a door through strangers. If I remember how my employer dismissed me, telling me that I was on my way to death, I know that God lives.” An emotional Jane says. She says that she has no words to express her gratitude to Faraja for being there for her at her hour of need.

“I am so grateful. Thank you, thank you Faraja!”

Editor’s Note: Faraja paid for Jane’s chemotherapy and brachytherapy treatment. She is currently doing well.

 

About Faraja Cancer Support Trust

With over 40,000 new cases diagnosed annually, finding a safe haven for cancer patients and their care-givers is very important. That is why Faraja Cancer Support Trust offers services to complement medical treatment through our free complementary therapies, support group meetings, Crafts for Cure Program and financial assistance. Our free complementary therapies include amongst others nutrition, counseling, yoga, dance, massage and a number of energy based therapies. There is evidence to suggest that if the medical treatment is complemented with such therapies the prognosis will be better.

Posted on December 5, 2019, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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