Baby Kierson Gumaro Catindoy is the youngest son of our dear friend Dinkie Gumaro. They currently reside in Sta. Maria Isabela, a 12hr bus ride to Manila.
Baby Kier was born last October 7, 2016. He was a healthy bouncing baby during his first two months. But one day, he got sick and vomited nonstop. Dinkie and her husband rushed Baby Kier to the hospital in Tuguegarao City, thinking that it's just one of those baby flu. But the doctors thought otherwise. After series of tests, he was diagnosed with Retinoblastoma.
Retinoblastoma (Rb) is a rare form of cancer that rapidly develops from the immature cells of a retina, the light-detecting tissue of the eye. It is the most common malignant cancer of the eye in children, and it is almost exclusively found in young children.
Baby Kier was immediately transfered to Philippine General Hospital in Manila.
Last January 9, 2017, Baby Kier, who just turned 3months old, underwent Enucleation to remove his left eye. The initial shock of the operation was unbearable to the young family. Never in their wildest thoughts that Baby Kier will become one-eyed baby. And when they thought that everything will be okay, they learned that the cancer has already spread in his right eye. And that he has to undergo Chemotherapy every after 21 days for 6cycles and a checkup for the rest of his life.
In addition to that, Baby Kier also needs to undergo the following:
- Laser after the 4th or 6th chemotherapy cycle, depending on his health condition
- MRI or CT scan after his chemotherapy
- Check up with the Cancer Institute and Ophthalmologist every two months.
With the meagre salary of Baby Kier’s parents — Dinkie is a non-uniformed personel in PNP and her husband is a warehouse supervisor in SM — all the procedures, tests, chemo sessions, and check-ups drained their finances.
Dinkie and her husband need all the help they can get to help Baby Kier in his medication and treatments. They were not preprared for this, they were caught off guard and were never able to recover eversince. It’s been very hard for Baby Kier’s family financially, physically and emotionally.
It's been six months since Baby Kier had his first operation and seems to have recovered since then. But everytime Dinkie looks at her baby, she is weeping deep inside. If only she can just take away the cancer, if only she can just magic the pain away.
For the past months, getting Baby Kier had his Chemo and Laser therapy was always a struggle. As they are only making use of charity's help, they have to wait for agonising days before the doctors can finally check him. There was a time that Baby Kier has to wait for 21 days, going back and forth to the hospital, before he can finally take the laser therapy. He also has to undergo fasting everytime he is scheduled for the laser. But since there is no definite time for his laser therapy, he once ended up fasting for 10hrs. Other times, the hospital will reschedule his laser therapy on the spot, making Baby Kier wait for days and days. Why does a baby has to undergo such hardships? If only they have enough money to pay for a private service, then they don't have to wait for an available doctor to do all the checkups.
Baby Kier's mom, Dinkie, is a good friend of mine back in highschool. I can say she is one tough mom. As a young mother myself, I could only imagine how painful it must be for Dinkie to see her child in pain, and knowing that the pain might last for a lifetime. It is more than heartbreaking. Hearing your baby's wailing everytime a needle will prick his skin will drive you crazy. But Dinkie has to be strong. She has to find ways to make it easy for her baby. She may be slowly giving up deep inside, but she has to show Baby Kier that everything will be alright. She has to keep on smiling, keep on singing songs and lullabies to Baby Kier to ease the pain.
He maybe just 8months old now, but Baby Kier is one of the strongest persons I have met. And together with all our highschool mates, we are hoping that thru this campaign, we can all help Baby Kier see the world again.
On behalf of Baby Kier and her parents, we would like to appeal to your kind heart. Let us help Baby Kier in his fight against Retinoblastoma (Rb), a rare form of cancer. Your financial donation in any amount would go a long way. Thank you in advance for your generosity. May God repay you a thousandfold.
- Rosemarie Belmonte
- Delia Khem
- Frinalyn Belmonte
- Rhona L Nath
- Susan Hoang
Organizer and beneficiary
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