Speaker: Dimple Parmar

Marrying Into Cancer -- and Finding Love

The founder of Love Heals Cancer based in Delhi, India, Dimple Parmar is a force to be reckoned with. Determined to serve humanity and bring a smile to everyone's face, she is a person who believes in letting the power of love and care engulf one’s life. After losing her loving partner and husband Nitesh Prajapat to the formidable disease at an extremely young age, Dimple has vowed to make it her life’s purpose to guide and support those battling cancer – as part of her ultimate goal of working to unite humanity under the umbrella of love. 

Dimple had nursed dreams of making a headway into the start-up business world through her innovative ideas. She was the proud co-founder of a customized footwear start-up enterprise during her student days. A promising student and remarkable sports woman, Dimple was consistently recognized for her academic excellence, all-around achievements, and bubbly personality. 

She met Nitesh while they were both students from 2015-2017 at the prestigious Indian Institute of Management in Calcutta. Eldest among his siblings, Nitesh was a simple man with determination and focus. Being the sole earning member of the family, he was working hard to improve his family's condition. As an alumnus of the highly selective Indian Institute of Technology and now studying at the Indian Institute of Management, he was on the way to a better life. In addition to his academic success, he had created the foundation for a successful start-up which he was working to flourish.

But a turn of fate brought it all to a halt. 

After a bout of ill health, a routine check-up in September 2016 revealed that Nitesh was suffering from Stage 3 colorectal cancer. At the age of 25, with his entire life to look forward to, news of this nature felt unreal and impossible. With his family's and friends’ support, Nitesh approached and started treatment in a logical, problem-solving way, determined to lick the disease. And Dimple supported him like his other faithful friends (they were not yet a couple).  But as she got to know him, she couldn’t help but fall in love. As Dimple was losing her heart on one side, Nitesh – who had no intention of pursuing a relationship and was focused on gaining his health back – also felt his heart softening.

A year-long struggle filled with interventions including surgery, radiation and chemotherapy followed, and the emerging couple thought the nightmare would near its end. But things got worse. In June 2017, Nitesh learned that the disease had metastasized throughout the body – to his lungs, abdomen and pelvic region – a total of 12 tumors, leading to a diagnosis of Stage IV cancer.

In the face of the dire news, Dimple and Nitesh didn’t pull back. Instead, they joined hands in marriage and swore to confront the storm together. This time around, the couple determined to alter their approach, incorporating lifestyle changes and natural healing modalities. When Nitesh was in the ICU for 23 days, Dimple with characteristic zeal started studying health and wellness from a holistic standpoint – how mind, body, and soul are connected. This was the start of her passion for wellness and the science behind treatments.

On March 14, 2018, cancer took the life of Nitesh. But Dimple transformed her love for Nitesh into a broader love. “Nitesh’s mission in life was to defeat cancer with love. It is now my goal to fulfill his purpose in life,” she wrote. “He continues to live through me.”  And to the departed Nitesh, she wrote a love letter recognizing that “our love has the power to give many others a second chance at life. My destiny was intertwined with yours because there was a greater purpose to it.”

Many people came to Dimple after Nitesh's death asking how they could serve.  So Dimple started an organization, Love Heals Cancer, to "empower the individual, the family, the community through addressing the cause of disease, to educate on natural self-care, better nutrition and how to grow/prepare foods and remedies within the continuum of what is custom, affordable, and available." The organization emphasizes the importance of getting back to the basics – healthy food, meditation, and exercise – to heal body, mind, and soul.

 “Our goal is to help patients live better and, where possible, longer lives. We address the unmet needs of people with cancer. These include finding balanced information on choices in healing, mainstream, and complementary therapies; exploring emotional and spiritual dimensions of cancer; discovering that illness can sometimes lead to a richer and fuller life; and experiencing genuine community with others facing a cancer diagnosis,” Dimple says

“Lifestyle changes really do add up,” Dimple says. “It's also about accepting whatever is offered, and loving and fighting irrespective of results. It's about expanding the life, not extending it. Inspiring and engaging them.” People with cancer diagnosis may be afraid, but Dimple, along with volunteers, offers love and caring to support them on that journey. 

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