Without hardship in life, we cannot fully understand the truth nor develop our own full potential.”
–Dharma Master Cheng Yen, Jing SI Aphorisms V.3
Judith Rollenas is a 22-year old resident of Can-umay, Loon who had a case of Cylindroma. Cylindromas, also known as cutaneous or dermal cylindromas, are rare and benign skin appendage tumors which usually grow in the head or scalp.
For the case of Judith, a brain-like mass structure was seen growing at the right side of her head which brought itchy feelings and headaches. According to her, as she grows, this tumor also gets bigger.
“I am Judith Rollinas from Can-umay Antequerra , Bohol. Before I was operated, this inborn tumor is too itchy and also painful at the same time. It grew bigger as I grow.” She informed.
It was remembered that Judith met Tzu Chi Foundation when she was still 18 years old. Her Case was carefully studied by Tzu Chi International Medical Association (TIMA) of Doctors. On November 7, 2016, the TIMA Doctors led by Dr.Ramon Lao and Dr.Robert Sy had preceded the operation. It lasted almost six hours as the surgeons removed Judith’s Cylindroma bit by bit and section by section. It was a laborious work but after it was all removed, the team of doctors and nurses who performed the surgery was all fulfilled to have successfully done Judith’s operation. Tzu Chi Foundation shouldered all the expenses for Judith’s operation.
It’s been four years since the operation had happened and she cannot forget the day where hope begins to shine. However, along with the scars, she can also still remember clearly how this tumor broke her, emotionally. Aside from itchy feeling and headaches, this tumor also brought a huge wound in her heart. Because of the brain-like tumor growing in her head, she was bullied at school.
“When I was Grade 1, I’m always bullied that’s why I decided to stop going to school. I am too shy to stay at the classroom and I am disappointed with my classmates who are calling me insulting names. Good thing that there are people who motivate me to come back to school and ignore whatever insulting words are thrown at me. When I reached Grade 3, I have noticed that my tumor gets bigger. ” she recalled.
Still vivid in her mind, the memory of how she met Tzu Chi Foundation.
“I met Tzu Chi during 2nd year highschool. They paid a visit in the various schools which were affected by the earthquake. They went to Bantolinao National High School and they saw me. I went to the Medial Mission conducted at Cortes and that’s the start of how they changed my life.” She continued.
According to Judith, her heart was filled with hope and happiness upon seeing Tzu Chi Foundation.
“I am so happy while praying to be given aid by Tzu Chi Foundation for the operation, which we cannot afford since we’re not rich. Seeing Tzu Chi Foundation, my heart is grateful enough for what will happen.” She said.
Now, this year will be her 4th anniversary of the operation being done to get the brain-like tumor. The scar of operation in her right head was still visible, but it was covered by the joy seen in her eyes.
Ever since the operation happened, there is a great change happened in her life.
“What I am is different than what I am before. I am comfortable and I cannot feel the itchy feeling in my head because of the tumor.”
Judith will always be grateful for Tzu Chi Foundation even if it’s been four years since the operation happened.
“I would like to thank Tzu Chi Foundation for helping me and giving me second chance to take away the tumor. It’s been four years since the operation has happened and my life is doing good with my family. Thank you Master Cheng Yen for helping me, and also to the staffs of Tzu Chi, especially ro Dr. Robert Sy and Raymon Lao. Thank you so much Tzu Chi.” She tearfully said.
“If Tzu Chi didn’t step in into my life, perhaps I still suffer from headaches and messed life. I am really thankful to Tzu Chi Foundation.” She added.
Today, Judith is living happily and contented with her family. The Cylindroma operation became a pavement of hope and new beginnings for her. She can face the crowd and her future with confidence and joy, knowing that the burden has been finally taken away from her.