Words cannot express the trauma of someone who’s lived with bone marrow cancer. That’s why young Pooja Vadodaria’s story is a lesson of courage and brave heart spirit that others can emulate. Sana Warsia was surprised to meet Pooja for unlike presumptions, Pooja is not a picture of someone wallowing in self-pity but a girl who has risen above the trauma of the illness to become a determined young figure ready to take on life with zest and zeal. Would you believe if someone told you that this young girl with an infectious smile has lived with cancer and every trauma that the life endangering disease can give to a person? Meet 18 year-old Pooja Vadodaria. Life for her was like any teenager – simple and beautiful till August 2007. It started off with a fever that never seemed to go away. Initially, medication did bring down the temperature but her white blood cell count kept dropping. The shocker to the Vadodarias came after further tests when Pooja was diagnosed with bone marrow cancer. The next thing the Vadodarias did was admitted Pooja to Bombay Hospital where eminent specialist Dr M B Agarwal treated Pooja for a month. Don’t get carried away with the smile that Pooja has on her face as she recalls the days of being treated for cancer because like any other cancer patient, Pooja too underwent month long treatment and endless rounds of chemotherapy and periodical bone marrow tests. And lived the nightmare of every effect that came with it from unbearable lower back pain, constant nauseas feeling, irritation to loss of hair. Today, when you hear Pooja talk of her illness, you know for sure that may be what kept Pooja going even then was her determination, will power and go for it attitude. The 18 year old won the fight against cancer. Now she has to visit the hospital only once a month for her treatment. Pooja talks of the support she received from her school DAV Public School, New Panvel. It doesn’t come as a surprise that the experience of living cancer has given the lass a new craving and desire to enjoy life to the fullest. Pooja loves to sing and dance – activities that reflect her vivacity. The journey through the illness has knit the Vadodarias into a support system for one another. As parents, all the Vadodarias can think of is an advice to all the parents to never neglect the smallest of ailments in their children. NMTV News salutes brave heart Pooja Vadodaria for making us believe that if you have the will power, the courage and the faith – you can move mountains. With cameraperson Abhay Prasad, Sana Warsia for NMTV News.
January 9, 2008