I was about six months old when I was diagnosed of hemophilia. Simply put, it is a condition where the body lacks an agent that is important to clot any bleeding/injuries for recovery. Without it, any injury or excessive physical strain can cause an unstoppable internal/external bleeding.
I had a challenging childhood tainted by the constant worry of being injured and the consistent questions and inquiries about my condition. In spite of scoring well in the exams, I had trouble securing an admission in a different school because no school wanted to take a chance with my condition.
Back in the days, my dad managed a banquet hall and I’d accompany him often. As a child, I was smitten by the stage. I cracked jokes every time I checked the mic’s sound. Gradually, comedy started becoming my safe haven. I could ball up my anger, pain and frustration into tight sets and crisp jokes. It was therapy. Things started looking up when I participated in ‘Chotey Miyan‘, a show by COLORS TV and hosted by Kapil Sharma. At 13, I was India’s youngest comedian.
Until a few years ago, either parent always travelled with me to help manage my condition. Some time in 2014, I was selected to represent India as a hemophilia survivor. I had to travel to Germany alone and went through rigorous training into self care and taking shots in order to sustain. There was no stopping me after that. I travelled to The States for shows and organised one of the most elaborate stand-up comedy shows all over Gujarat, India.
Pushing Borders and Boundaries
Comedy helped me change the one question that revolved around my life for a long time: from asking ‘how are you?’ or ‘what is hemophilia?’, people now ask ‘when is your next show?’ I founded ‘Cafe Comedy’ where I train aspiring stand up comedians and my YouTube channel has garnered over 50 million views.
Medicine has progressed a lot since I was diagnosed. Things are easier and less painful. I believe that no matter what the situation, there is always a way out. All one needs to do is take things in one’s stride and get in head on. Life is too short to live in complaints, laugh away.
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