She is 33-years old and has two small girls. Her husband suffers from a rare and incurable disease which attacked his lungs. He fights for every breath, assisted by oxygen supply. He will survive only with a lung transplant.
"I never knew how painful can turn to be the simple act of writing, when one pours oneâs heart into it. I am 33 but I feel 66. I lived to the fullest. I married Catalin Munteanu as soon as I graduated high-school. We started our lives with a lot of faith and assured that hard work was our only way to achieve our dreams. I worked with the railways company, and he worked at the Galati steel mill. Our salaries combined allowed us to get a mortgage. We were so happy to move in our own apartment, to eat from our own dishes and watch our own TV set, albeit all bought on credit. These were to us like proofs of battles won," says the woman.
"The complete happiness I felt at the birth of our first girl, Carmen. But as soon as we had our second girl, Crina, in 2002, my husbandâs health started to deteriorate. Following investigations at the Lung Hospital Â«Marius NastaÂ» in Bucharest, the diagnostic was found to be lung fibrosis, with unknown causes. This is a very rare disease which attacks the lungs and untimely the whole body, which is chronically deprived of oxygen.
One year later, following a common cold, Catalin was again admitted to hospital with severe cough. Then we found out that his lungs were working at 45% of their capacity, that he will need constant supply of oxygen and will not be able to work anymore. The treatment can only slow down the progress of the disease, but not stop it.
My salary stayed at RON 640, and Catalinâs pension reached RON 330. On this budget we had to cover regular expenses plus the cost of the oxygen therapy. The ordeal was only beginning. The disease progressed and his lungs operate now at 20%. The only hope is for a lung transplant, the doctors said."
"I wish no one to get the kind of experience that I did, to see the loved one struggling for every breath. I watch my husband along my girls, aged 10 and 4, now, as he is withering away as a candle in the wind, at age 36.
We had the opportunity to meet a person suffering from the same disease and who benefited from a lung transplant performed in Austria. With help from our relative we raised 3,000 euros for the medical tests and expenses, and Tarom national air carrier sponsored our trip to Vienna. At the airport we were welcomed by a representative of the Osterreichisher Verband Der Hert Und Lungen Transplantierten sor the foundation of the people who underwent lung transplantst. We are grateful to these people because they helped us with the accommodation and with the fix and mobile oxygen supplies. Doctors at the Â«Allgemeines KrankenhausÂ» sor general hospitalt concluded that my husband is fit to undergo a lung transplant. The only thing which stays in the way now is 100,000 euros, which we have to pay in the hospitalâs account."
The family filed a request with Ministry of Health which has them listed for a total of 80,000 euros funding. However, no resolution yet was given to their request.
Two bank accounts are open for private donations, which could bring about a huge change, no matter how small the contribution.
The accounts are open in Catalin Munteanuâs name at Raiffeisen Bank, Sucursala Galati: RO78RZBR 0000060007832321, for RON donations, and RO02RZBR 0000060007832331, for euro donations, respectively.
Further information on Catalinâs case
can be found out calling phone 0236-317170 or 0745-218809.
Translated by Anca Paduraru