Bouncing Back - Vaibhav Nehra
On occasion of World Hemophilia Day, we are featuring, Vaibhav
Nehra, a young dynamic nature-lover, chartered accountant from Gurgaon, Haryana
In 2010, he featured in the “Treatment for All” series video of the World Federation
of Hemophilia (WFH). He was invited by the WFH to speak at the World Hemophilia
Congress 2010 in Argentina on the issues faced by young hemophilia patients in
developing countries. His profile was also featured in the online World
Hemophilia Day 2011 awareness campaign of the WFH. He has spoken at national
and international public forums organized by various NGOs and Hospitals about
diverse issues related to hemophilia patients. The latest public address that Vaibhav
gave was at MAMC Auditorium in Lok Nayak Hospital last Friday (13th April 2012) during Hemophilia Day celebrations organized by the Hemophilia Day Care Centre there. He has initiated a group of PwH with a vision to connect all the young PwH living in Delhi NCR. He also writes a blog about the bleeding disorders community which is titles"Blood Relations Blog" (http://bloodrelationsblog.
Hemophilia is one of the most painful and expensive medical conditions in the world. I have never known life without hemophilia. Like all PwH, I have been living with this incurable bleeding disorder ever since my birth. And this disorder has contributed immensely in making me whatever I am today. It made me spend countless nights awake, trying to gulp down excruciating pain. It made me miss school for months, making me struggle at every step to get a decent education. It left me broken at the most inappropriate times, making me miss valuable opportunities in life. And yet it taught me to bounce back every time and make myself stronger than before.
I was bedridden with never-ending pain for almost the whole academic year in 2002-03 when I was studying in the 10th standard in school. A nasty internal joint bleed had caused profuse damage to my left knee and it was nearly impossible for me to bend or extend it. The bleed had refused to subside fully despite several months of treatment. I weighed just a tad above 25 kgs. I was certain that if I ever manage to survive, I will never be able to stand upright on my feet again. Intense physiotherapy helped me infuse enough strength back in my legs to walk again, though my joints still have deformities.
Walking down busy streets, when I look back on those days now, I feel a person can rise up from any situation in life. I took up chartered accountancy as my preferred career choice, much to the surprise of many well-wishers who had advised me to pursue something that was ‘easier’. I have traveled to remote corners of the Great Himalayas and aim to conquer the high snow capped peaks, even though my joints continuously tell me to think otherwise.
Throughout my life, I have come across plenty of people who felt that my life lacks something because of hemophilia. All of us who are differently-abled come across many such people in life. I don’t rebel and say that I don’t lack anything in life; instead I say that every human lacks something, it’s what we lack that makes us human. If we won’t lack anything, we would be God. The so-called normal people lack many things as well, but they are able to conceal it, whereas we are able to accept it as a reality of life which does not need to be concealed. That’s why we are different and able.
- Vaibhav Nehra