“I was diagnosed with hydrocephalus but despite my condition, I never considered myself a disabled one. Instead, I see this as an inspiration to look for the brighter things in life. I hope through my story I could also inspire and empower others who are suffering from any problems, whether an illness, a brain condition like hydrocephalus or any other challenges that they face,” said Ma. Janica Delusa of Tagbilaran City, Bohol.
Hydrocephalus is a brain condition that happens when cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) — the clear, watery fluid that surrounds and cushions the brain and spinal cord — cannot drain from the brain. It then pools, causing a buildup of fluid in the skull. If it is not treated, hydrocephalus can lead to brain damage, a loss in mental and physical abilities.
Janica had her surgery in 2016.
“The doctor told us to prepare a considerable amount of money for my operation and my family was extremely worried on where to get the payment for the medical bills,” recalled Janica.
“Gladly, through the help of PhilHealth, the hospital bill had been paid. My mother had just presented our 4Ps id and my hospital bill of about a million had become zero balance,” she added.
“The year when I got operated was also the year of my graduation in elementary. I could still remember that while my classmates were busy of their practice for our graduation day, I was also fighting for my life inside the operating room. Thank God, I survived. I did not expect to be awarded as class valedictorian that is why I was so grateful that I was recognized as class valedictorian,” tearfully said Janica.
“Abled or disabled, there’s no greater difference between the two. We could make something useful out of everything without minding the capabilities we may have. Others may treat me as a person that could only limit the things that I may be able to do but I think otherwise. Because I know that there is no limit to what we can dream,” said Janica.
Janica often emerged top of her class and actively joined school activities such as quiz bee, jingle making, dancing contest, essay writing contest and she constantly won in every contest.
As one of the officers of the Supreme Student Government (SSG) in her school, she stands as a role model to her classmates in leading both the co-curricular and extra-curricular activities.
“I am also the Vice President of the Girl Scout of the Philippines in our school and I always try hard to be a good example to my co-girl scouts and to the students. We usually do clean-up and tree planting activities and these are our ways in maintaining the cleanliness and tidiness of our community and make it a safe haven for us students,” said the incoming Grade 10 student.
Becoming Pantawid beneficiary
“I always study hard since I want to help my family in the future. The only problem was that, my parents cannot easily sustain our family needs, especially financial needs. During that time, I could say that our life was hard. My father is a trisikad driver and my mother is a plain housewife. I have 6 siblings and it was not easy for my parents to provide for our daily needs,” added Janica.
“I always wanted to finish my study but my parents could hardly pay our school fees since the money that my father earned was only enough for our daily food expenses. There were times that we could not even eat at the right time,” she recalled.
Janica said that their life changed when they become partner-beneficiary of the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps).
“We can now pay our school fees and buy school supplies through the cash grants that we received from 4Ps,” said Janica.
“Also, as a child-beneficiary of the program, I was able to attend the Youth Development Session (YDS) at school and I am very glad that I have learned a lot of things from the said activity such as having proper hygiene and being a role model to everyone,” cheerfully said Janica.
Her favorite bible verse is Jeremiah 29:11 ” For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.
“I’m holding on to this verse because I know that God has planned something bigger for me. Things that I have never expected to come and to happen in my life. One great proof is when I won as the 2018 Provincial Exemplary Pantawid Pamilya Child in Bohol,’’ proudly said Janica.
She encourages her co-students and fellow youths to pursue their dreams and never lose hope.
“I am very thankful to God for giving me a second chance to live in this world and pursue my dreams. I hope I would become a professional teacher because I want to let my future students know the true essence of living life to the fullest. I want to let them realize how good it is to feel that there is hope and how good it is to share the greatness of faith. I also want to let them discover on how life unfolds each passing day and how vast the world, waiting for them to be explored,” said Janica.
“Above all these, I give all the glory to God our creator, for the successes He let me enjoy. Though sometimes, His ways are beyond my understanding, I am holding on to my faith with firm belief, that despite all life’s challenges, God is crafting my grandest future. ### (PR from Social Marketing Unit of DSWD-7)