Diagnosed with Muscular Dystrophy, Rishika MV shows how to lead an independent life
28-year-old Rishika MV is a singer, teacher and craftsperson from Kerala. Rishika was diagnosed with Muscular Dystrophy when she was hardly nine years old. This youngster, who is a wheelchair user, shows how to become independent and successful in life in spite of having physical limitations.
Rishika MV, who is 28 years old now, was diagnosed with Muscular Dystrophy (MD) when she was around nine years old. Though the first few years after diagnosis was tough, Rishika has overcome all her struggles to become a successful and independent young woman now. Rishika, who lives at Thrissur in Kerala is a singer, teacher and also does her own craft works to earn money. To a society that says that disabled people cannot become independent, Rishika shows how to do it like a boss!
A diagnosis and childhood years
From a very young age, Rishika used to have occasional falls, which is one of the common symptoms of SMD. Her worried parents consulted her to a doctor when she was around nine years old. Her first doctor told that falls are common and can happen to children of that age group. But her parents took her to NIMHANS in Bengaluru where she was diagnosed with MD, something that shook all their lives.
I always knew that I was different from other children. I couldn’t play with them because as soon as they pushed me slightly, I would fall down and break my bones. So as a child, that used to hurt me a lot. I gradually realized that there was something wrong though I did not know what exactly it was- Rishika MV.
This youngster did her schooling at a convent school near her home, but then couldn’t attend higher classes due to accessibility issues. Though she joined for class 12, Rishika had to discontinue that as well due to health reasons.
Her family comprising of parents, brother and his family have always been supportive of Rishika and her ventures.
Life with a disability
Rishika always knew that nothing could deter her spirits, not even physical limitations. She started taking tuitions for those children up to class 12. She helped them cope up with academics in whatever way she could. “Due to the ongoing Coronavirus crisis, I have not been able to take classes. But otherwise, my hands are full. There are always children around me and that keeps me lively”, she says.
Rishika was also working as a craft teacher at a nearby school till last year. Now since schools are shut, she is looking for alternatives to keep herself engaged.
Her craft works are popular, mainly bottles, flowers and dream catchers that are sold fast. Rishika is also a passionate and ardent lover of books. She reads a lot.
Rishika has been singing from a young age and continues to do so sitting on her wheelchair. She has performed in at least 20-30 venues, mostly Malayalam film songs. “I believe there is always a guiding light in our lives which most of us do not see. Never lose hope because nothing is impossible. Every person is different in their own ways”, says Rishika.
Her mother Nirmala remembers how the family was disheartened when they came to know of Rishika’s condition. “The doctors told us that there was no treatment or medicine for her condition. We had taken her to different hospitals. But today, whatever we did for her was worth it. When I look at her, I do not feel she has a disability. She has learnt to make the fullest out of life”, she says.
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