Jose Anselmo Moreno |
Valladolid (EFE).- Daniel Barrios Rabadán is a 38-year-old from Valladolid who, since he was 11, has traveled increasingly distant hospitals to “bend his arm” to cancer, with four brain tumors that have led to the fact that he is currently missing a part of the brain, although the other has it “more or less well”, according to irony and recounts in an interview with EFE two days after the celebration of World Cancer Day.
He lives in Alcazarén, no longer working due to permanent disability after having worked for several years in the town council, and tells his story of disagreements, shocks and fights, which began in 1996 with a hospital journey that started in Medina del Campo, after start babbling one day, not understanding what people were saying.
“I responded with words that don’t even come on Wikipedia,” he jokes as he recalls that they then took him to the town doctor and then to the Medina hospital. Later, more hospitals arrived: Valladolid, Madrid or Barcelona and, along the way, she had to learn to walk again, although, after all, she has a visible limp.
They know him in his native Alcazarén as “Sanchís”, he says that his father was called that because of his resemblance to the former Real Madrid soccer player and he has stuck with that nickname forever. Daniel also played soccer, his passion is Real Valladolid and, in fact, he was one of the founders of the Peña blanquivioleta in his town.
“Before, I suffered with the defeats at Pucela and now I’m turning the page, my experience with ill health has given me that,” he says, while remembering when his uncle Jesús took him to football for the first time and he was amazed to see so many happy people. at the same time when your team scores. Today his uncle runs marathons at the age of 57 and Dani walks with a cane, but he doesn’t complain because “complaining doesn’t solve anything.”
Living with four tumors in his head has made him strong, since from a very young age he has required intensive treatment, operations and has visited more than ten hospitals (first for children) and has completed a story of overcoming so extreme that he even continues joking about it: «The problems that people tell me sometimes seem silly when I remember the times when I only aspired to heal myself and not go up».
He evokes as if it were yesterday, and he goes back three decades, the day it all began, when he was only 11 years old. That day when not even he himself understood what he was saying. In addition, his head ached a lot: “it was an unbearable pain,” he recalls.
He spent years without a clear diagnosis but, over time, the first brain tumor was discovered, near his left eye, and since he could not undergo surgery in Valladolid, the intervention was months later at the Niño Jesús Hospital in Madrid. He was only 15 years old.
After the intervention and the definitive tests, they told him that it was a malignant tumor. Later came epilepsy, which was diagnosed with an electroencephalogram in Valladolid. There he started taking many pills every day. “The pills and I are inseparable,” he says.
After that first operation, everything seemed to have been overcome, but two years later the cancer showed its face again, since another brain tumor had reproduced.
It was then that endless chemotherapy sessions arrived and he lost his hair, which he never fully recovered. “I lack on the sides and sometimes I look like a punk,” he ironized with his physical appearance, while recalling that the visit to Madrid for that second operation allowed him to see Real Valladolid draw at the Bernabéu (2-2) . “That day I will never forget in my life,” he says.
The year 2005 arrived and it seemed to see the light. Everything was in order and he lived a few years submerged in normality, even playing sports, but at the end of 2014 everything became complicated again. They found another tumor on the top of his head again and this time, in addition, he lost part of the mobility of his body.
They operated on him in March 2015 and, after a year of rehabilitation, he returned “more or less” to normal although his work at the Alcazarén City Council had to be interrupted.
The people paid tribute to him upon arrival from this third surgical intervention: “They received me in a kind of Welcome Mr. Marshal, with banners and everything, and they tricked me into taking me to the Zorrilla stadium and visiting it inside, that was my friends.”
The last time cancer appeared in Daniel’s life was at the end of 2017, on November 28. “I don’t forget the dates, I have them collected in my head as if they were stickers,” he says.
He went to a hospital in Barcelona to treat an increasingly recurrent epilepsy and they discovered another new tumor on his head. The room. That’s where he got the hardest part, he went through 31 chemotherapy sessions. The worst of all.
Everyone in town already knows about his pilgrimage through hospitals and his extreme suffering. Some neighbors have had to lend him a hand and sometimes take him by car to Valladolid until he managed to get his driver’s license, that was one of his small victories in the midst of the “slaps” of health.
When this interview takes place, he has just arrived driving from the neighboring town of Olmedo and laments, not without a certain sarcasm, that despite everything he has experienced and walking with a cane, they have not given him the card to park in the area of disabled people “I don’t know what else is needed,” he says.
After these years of hospital experiences and treatment, she recognizes that some doctors and nurses have already been like part of her family and she wants to thank them for their attention, since “without them, I would not be here.”
goodbye to football
Although he is still a fan of Real Valladolid and is passionate about soccer, at 38 he can no longer practice his favorite sport, futsal, with which he was champion of the Tierra de Pinares Tournament. “What a rivalry there was in those games,” he recalls.
In this context, he says that he was quick with the ball, but in one of his health “mishaps” he was completely lame “and football is over.” He then turned to the world of technology and puzzles. From the first it is to the last of everything and the second serves to exercise the mind. In fact, there is a gigantic “puzzle” of his on display in the municipal premises of Alcazarén.
He concludes by saying that each relapse has been more painful than the previous one and, as he wants to specify and influence, he assures that he suffers more for the family than for him. «One day you tell your mother that you are cured, but when you start again you know what awaits us all, you and the rest». The only thing on Dani’s mind is “not being a burden to anyone”. The rest, incredible as it may seem, barely worries him. EFE