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ENABLING HERSELF DESPITE DISABILITY

With every ounce of strength left from her legs, Nanay Lita does everything she could still do as a mother, wife, and a Parent Leader, even after the night of an incident that changed her life.

Nanay Isabelita Bruzuela and Tatay Yudhewawhe, or Tatay Diwo, live a simple life as farmers in the small barangay of Sumilang in Calauag, Quezon. They have four kids, two of which are already married and send financial support every now and then.

Nanay Lita and Tatay Diwo would always work hand in hand in keeping their vegetables and harvesting them to sell in their local market. The wide land full of coconut trees that surround their humble home, a nipa hut, and a small part of that land they use to plant cabbage, eggplant, chili, is their source of income. If they have some extra money on their pockets, they would buy wholesale of bananas from a plantation and sell them with their harvested vegetables. Nanay Lita said,

“Ayan ngang asawa ko ay nagsasarili na ngayon ng pagtitinda ng mga gulay diyan sa palengke. May papag ho kami diyan kaya kapag po may paninda hahakutin po nila ng bunso ko at ititinda.”

As Nanay Lita just stays at home and passes her time, some of her neighbors let her do the base of net baskets for flowers, which would make her earn a little.

THE INCIDENT AND ITS AFTERMATH

It was on the night of January 28, 2018 that Nanay Lita experienced an incident. As Nanay Lita walked towards her home, her umbrella slipped on the edge of the narrow pathway and her right leg and knee took a bad fall. Nanay Lita was rushed to the nearest lying in and was transferred to Quezon Medical Center; she stayed at the hospital for one month and hospital bills were piling up. Her son, John David, chose to stop his studies and tried to find jobs he can handle to be able to have an income that would support their family. Nanay Lita said,

“Sabi sa akin kung natuloy ang operasyon ko, dahil lalagyan ng bakal itong hita ko, aabot ng Php 50,000.00 lahat ng babayaran bukod pa yung bakal na ikakabit.”

But since Nanay Isabelita is a Pantawid beneficiary, she did not pay a single cent for it.

Suffering from a misaligned tendon, a possible thyroid cancer if not treated, and a suspected rib tumor, Nanay Lita’s fighting spirit has never been deterred.

OF SERVICE TO OTHERS

Nanay Isabelita was voted to become the new Parent Leader this year and despite of her current condition, her co-beneficiaries still wanted her to lead them. She said,

“Sabi ko nga at palitan na ako. Pero dahil noong nagsimula akong maging PL kahit isang papel lang ay tinutulungan ko silang lakarin. Yung mga dating hindi nakakapag-payout ay okay na ngayon. Ang pinalitan ko ring PL kasi ay hindi naming kabarangay kaya simula dati ay ako na rin ang humahawak ng mga papel at tumutulong lakarin.”

Not minding her own condition, Nanay Lita would always make herself available to her co-beneficiaries stating,

“Hindi po kami talaga naging madamot. Kahit na iyang asawa ko, kapag may nanghihingi ng niyog o ng gulay, sasabihin lang niyan, sige kumuha kayo. Kasi hangga’t meron naman kaming maibabahagi magbibigay kami.”

As much as she wanted to always be at Family Development Sessions and constantly attend to her co-members’ need, Nanay Lita would just be in contact through phone calls and text messages since the day of her incident. Though concerns are frequent and are in need of her attention, it could not be denied how her co-beneficiaries worry about her too.

Her co-beneficiaries’ trust, her family’s unending support and love, including the financial help and Philhealth grant as a beneficiary, has become Nanay Lita’s fuel to keep on fighting and dreaming that she can still walk through that narrow way and do things the way she did. She stated,

“Kapag pala ikaw ay may ginawang mabuti sa kapwa mo kahit ika’y mahirap lang, hindi mo namamalayan pero darating ang pagkakataon na ikaw ay tutulungan din.”

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