When you lose someone, life looks unfair and difficult. And when you lose your life partner, you try to find any possible way to stay connected with them.
Such is the story of Rashi Yadav who lost her husband to cancer a couple of years ago.
Broken after her husband’s death, Rashi struggled to come to the terms that love of her life, Rahul Yadav, was no more.
How Rahul’s & Rashi’s Life Changed Forever?
For the beautiful young couple, the life took an ugly turn when Rahul, a resident of Delhi living in Bengaluru, had a mild stomach ache, cough, and cold that did not subside despite taking medications.
Assuming that the symptoms might be of dengue, Rahul went to Manipal Hospital and got his tests done in August 2013. Though the results were negative, the doctors had their suspicions and hence, suggested to conduct a few more tests.
But, when the results came, the doctors shared the heartbreaking news with Rashi and Rahul’s parents that he had Plasma Cell Leukemia (PCL).
PCL is very rare yet very aggressive kind of cancer. During PCL, the patient has high levels of abnormal plasma cells in the blood. Though the healthy plasma cells fight infection, the reality is different in a PCL patient. Instead of antibodies, the body produces paraproteins that cannot fight infections.
Though the available treatment options for PCL are chemotherapy and stem cell transplant, the survival rates are extremely poor.
But Rahul’s Strong-Willed Spirit Never Gave Up
Knowing how tough it’s going to be, the brave couple went through 15 painful chemotherapy sessions and surgeries including gallbladder removal and two Bone Marrow Transplants with utmost positivity.
Gifted with the ability to make a deep connection with people, Rahul made friends at the hospital too.
While recalling how Rahul in the toughest and the lowest moment of his life, still occupied himself with helping others, Rashi shared with TBI:
“They would often exchange ideas, solutions, and ways that could make chemotherapy less exhausting, mentally and physically. These talks not only proved helpful but also motivating for cancer patients. Rahul made a Whatsapp group and even started a Facebook group to scale up his mission”
Also, sharing why Rahul named the group ‘Yoddhas’ which means fighters, Rashi shared:
“For every cancer patient, it is nothing less than a battle. They fight the disease irrespective of the outcomes,”
Rahul’s dedication to helping other people living with cancer was quite inspirational. Rashi shared:
“Even in his last few days when he was admitted in the ICU, Rahul questioned us about an upcoming event of the Yoddhas. His passion for educating people was way bigger than any of the needles, wires or medicines,”
This blessed soul who worked relentlessly, even in his last few days, to help others struggling with Cancer, sadly succumbed to the deadly disease on 13 June 2017.
That day not only a son but also a husband and a brother and a pillar of strength of hundreds of cancer patients died.
Carrying On The Legacy, She is taking Rahul’s ‘Yoddhas’ To A New Level
Devastated though she was, Rashi Yadav knew she had to pull herself together to honor the legacy of her husband.
Though she lost her loved one to cancer, she made sure many others don’t.
Founded by Rahul to bring together people living with cancer so that they can share their daily ordeals is 15,000-strong family now. With the help of volunteers from Delhi University, they are raising aid through crowdfunding to help cancer-patients financially.
“Rahul raised funds for his treatment. Crowdfunding is a great platform to lessen the financial burden on families of cancer patients.”
Sharing how society taboos refrain to people suffering from cancer to battle alone, Rashi shares:
“Many people do not share about their cancer out of embarrassment or sympathies they get. Rahul’s journey motivated hundreds of people to accept their condition and talk about the same freely,”
Recalling her husband’s dream of helping cancer patients, she shares:
Rahul used to say I am fighting a battle I didn’t choose, the rules of engagement are not under my control. But how I react to the circumstances is my choice, and no one can take that from me. If I can help others feel even a bit of how Rahul felt, it would be a great honour for me.
From educating students and corporate houses about life and health insurances, supporting patients to connect with doctors, caregivers, visiting bone marrow registries to raising money, Yoddhas is touching several lives each day.
At I FOR HER, we feel Rashi has found the most beautiful and heart-touching way to build a remembrance for her late husband.
As a society, we need to spread the word about Yoddhas as it may help a cancer victim to fight his battle with more strength and support.
We hope more people will seek inspiration from such a progressive way to show love!
Worldwide, one million people are diagnosed with (PCL) every year. If you wish to help Yoddhas and this wife to fight against cancer, you can click here.