Friday, October 29, 2010

"I did not cry"

As I knew him, his face with expressions of life was his only moving part. He was paralyzed neck below and kept alive on a ventilator. His smile was his only widow to life.

As time goes on his body got stiffened. His arms, legs, and trunk shrunk and he became one block of a body. He looked to me like a giant graceful tree with his roots fixed deep in earth and his soul trapped in this tree. Life with its mysteries surprises us all.Living a life in a body which had been paralyzed and stiffened made me thinking about the giant trees with deep roots which live for ages.

To some he looked like a tree,with branches of smile,standing firm against odds of being up rooted and quick death.To others,he looked like a body waiting for total decay.

I took care of him day after day,I felt overwhelmed but I did not cry.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

"fearful of even a napkin's fall"

She was the youngest daughter of her mom.She had a neurological disease and she was dying young.Everyone in her family was afraid of the unavoidable happening.There was sadness in the air.Her mother was crying with the knowledge that she will out live her daughter.In normal life this was not the way death is dealt with,we all knew.

As she remained hospitalised her family seemed to understand the progression of her disease.Day after day,she was getting weaker.I saw the fear of death was building up to the point that even a napkin falling off the dinning table could send her in jitters.She was afraid of death.

Though our meetings with her family had brought them in terms with their loved ones neuromuscular condition and her final fate,but somehow that understanding made that patient more lonely.She was left out to deal with her own battle.There was a struggle to be fearless in a fearful condition.

I saw that as she was then fearful of even a napkin's fall.I wondered what got to her besides the obvious.There was no unknown in her condition.May be she was grieving alone as her family was getting more accepting of her fate.

To some,family support matters a lot when they grieve together as it make them connected and strong.To others,grieving alone make fear an undesirable companion.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

"perfect match"

When I first saw her,she had a big abdominal surgery.Her colon was removed and she had a bag attached for bodily function.Over time after multiple ups and downs she started to get really better.She had then this cheek to cheek smile,talking non stop,greeting everyone.Her days were as good as her nights.That's a big sign of improvement for hospitalised patients.

One day during my rounds,her husband told me that they are married for 40 years,they are kind of a soul mate and he had a similar bag like his wife's for the past 20 years.He was kind of delighted.I looked at his wife during our conversation and she said,"perfect match,we both have bags now."

How some couples keep justifying what they have in common to show their strength of relationship is probably over rated.There is no soul mate on the ground of commonality.

To some, similarities bring them close to each other but in reality it is the opposites which keep the passion alive. This may be the secret of a relationship lasting a life time.

Friday, October 8, 2010

"he had tried all drugs except heroine"

He was sick.His liver was effected,so were his heart,lungs and kidneys.While talking to him,he mentioned in one of his proud moments that he had tried all sorts of drugs except heroine.His rationale was that heroine could make some one hooked on to it.He never wanted to be an addict so he did not do heroine.

Looking at him was a sad picture.He was young but he looked someone twice his age.He had build up fluid in his abdomen and lungs.His heart was failing,so were his kidneys.That was all in all drugs related loss.His body was decaying so were his dreams.

How some people keep their prospective about drugs and addiction while doing it is a shocking reality.Drugs kill people overtime slowly in a painful way which some of us even cannot empathise.

To some,living a life with drugs is like living in an extreme sport.To others,the struggle is how to respect someone if they had disrespected their own body with drugs !

Monday, October 4, 2010

"she can't die on her birthday"

The daughter was in tears,her mother was dying.

The daughter had been updated several times over a period of time regarding her mothers condition. Every passing by day she had a lesser chance of keep surviving. Her diseases,her age,her wishes were all lined up to tell the truth.Life was moving on to death.As we discussed her mothers condition the daughter was in tears.She paused and said,"she cann't die on her birthday,doctor". I felt her words,I looked at her,I kept eye contact but could not say a word.

She was a VIP, as we called her.That was because of her age,her looks and her being here on earth like an over extended stay.

Sadly she died on a birthday.Aging years ceased with a breath-stop.Celebration of a life turned into a celebration of lives she touched.

How does it really matter to live beyond a birthday when ones death is at the door steps.The question with many answers.

To some,it is a matter of proving longevity while for others a last salute:
welcome and farewell intertwined.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

"I love you too"

"I love you too",those were his last words.She got confirmation of his love for her finally.Those were his final words.

He was incapacitated from his medical conditions and only things he could do was open his eyes.No movement,no words.He was dying.

Every day during hospital course his fiance visited him. She held his hand and her words for him were clear and to the point,"I love you".She had gotten no reply days after days,then weeks after weeks.She was so much in love that she wanted to marry him even under those dire conditions.He couldn't,as his "I do" no one could hear.

As she told everyone the words which made her complete in love,we may wonder why he said what she heard.

To some,being in love keeps them alive,for others a love story make them eternal.

Friday, October 1, 2010

"goodbye old jello"

The patient had a non stop coughing spell. He had prominent neck veins and beet red face.He was aspirating food all the times.This was his one of many hospital admissions for recurrent pneumonias.

Finally it was decided by medical team to have him nothing per orally.He almost begged for at least having jello for him.The request was granted with understanding of risks by the patient.Sadly he aspirated again.

As I discussed with him about risk of dying from aspiration of food and now for him no food,eating or drinking,for life.He looked at me,smiled and said,"goodbye old jello".That was a sobering moment.

How some people find words to say it all is funny and heartbreaking.To some eating food is life,for others life is not eating at all.

In reality,the choice seems to be a forced one !