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The day I met ME

Sitting in the waiting room I wish I had opted for my hair removal.

No, I was never drop dead gorgeous. Guys never turned their head again and again to look at me. And my sister always told me….Do take some care of yourself. But did I ever listen to her, no.

Yes I passed out of my PGDBA with a gold medal and all but  the finance market  was down at that time and I was left searching high and low for a job. Yes, I gave exams, interviews but all to no avail. I passed the written examination of a bank and my parents were so relieved. You see I had laid down the condition that I wanted to work at least for a year before they could search for alliances for me. Till then marriage could wait

And so I dreamt of a job wherein I would go wearing a starched saree, with a mobile in one hand, a file on another. Till my mother gently tapped my shoulder and said, ‘now will you prepare for the  interview’. The first round went well. The meeting with the GM was next.  The answers for the preliminary questions were all fine. But he kept on looking at me. No, nothing indecent but just kept on looking. The he asked me, ‘So you get a job here. Tomorrow you get married. Then you get posted someplace else; that is you are transferred, then what you will do?’

I said, ‘That we will have to discuss amongst us’. I mean what could I say about the future partner.

He looked at me again and said, ‘that is it’.

And no I was not selected.

That was the second rejection. Earlier one was in Chennai where in I had gone  for a floor manager’s job in one of the leading malls. The interview had gone well but I had not been selected.

Still ‘dimaag ki bati nahi jali’ ie the tube light did not flash even then. I did not understand…….

And here I was sitting amidst all these smart girls/ women in Mumbai. Who looked impeccable and me….. a hairy goat. I got up and went to the ladies room. And peered at myself. Yes this girl (me- I have always been a girl for myself :)) looked good. Only if ….some finesse was needed.  At that time I wished I  had opted for my hair removal. But no; that had to wait.

The first round went well. The second round was on the next day.I rushed and got myself a Gillette satin care and did the needful.

Then rushed to the nearest saloon and did the rest- threading of eyebrows etc. And then I went home and slept.

The next day at the second round, the coordinator looked at me for a full 5 minutes and said, ‘You look different’

I said,’ Just different….’ and gave him a flashy smile.

‘You look gorgeous mmmm very refined ‘, he said in a very ‘refined ‘ way.

I got that job. Yes, people looks can build confidence too. And Gillette Satin care gave me my much-needed confidence.

My sister had the last word ( sentence) though, ‘I told you, take care of yourself.’ Sisters I tell you they know best.

This post is a part of the Gillette Satin Care contest in association with BlogAdda.com Yes I never participate in contests but this I want to win, so that I can gift the Ipad to someone special-the man who stands by me 🙂

Image courtesy:us123.rf.com

Never forget

On Saturday I was putting my clothes to dry on the terrace. It was a breezy day; the sun was playing hide and seek amidst the clouds,a helicopter was flying above; I was hanging a cloth when  my right foot stuck an elevation in front of me and I fell. And then I sat and cried. I was hurt but more than the hurt I cried for a life which though is independent; will never be normal again. I will always have to walk with my head bowed down, I will always have to read with the paper held near, I will always have problem distinguishing faces. And although I should have got adjusted to my status by now; it still hurts. I am never allowed to forget that now I come in the class of visually impaired.

We live in constant fear too. Every now and then I check my sight. I peep through the peephole to check whether I can see. I try to read billboards far away. Sometimes I wonder what we are afraid of really? The fact that my tumor may recur, the fact that I may go completely blind or the fact that every visit to the OT makes our pocket a lot lighter.

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In our school days we see so many dreams, plan so much – want to do this; want to do that. But as we grow all those dreams and plans are forgotten. In the rush to build careers and homes, all the tiny things that give us immense pleasure are forgotten.

I feel as soon as we come in the bracket of 35+, we should start catching up on those dreams. By that age most  of us have achieved something in our careers and at home too. Do something which gives you pleasure, do something which you always wanted to do.  Plan your retirement too.

When I was in Mysore for my graduation I used to help out two blind students who were doing their B.A. It was nothing much; sometimes help them cross the road, dictate notes etc. And I had dreamt that one day I will do something for the visually challenged people. I believe that what I am going through today is God’s way to show me what the blind need. And I believe someday I will be able to do something for people like me.

I plan too; not only for my retirement days but also for a life beyond that. But that will be a post for another day and another site.

Never forget what you used to dream about.

A mother’s prayer

This post is a continuation of my last post, but at the onset let me clarify that I write about myself not for sympathy or to gain eyeballs but to create awareness. Whenever some situation arises which is not something which we had envisaged for ourselves, we despair and ask ‘Why me?’. Whereas there are very few things which are really in our control, so why lament, take each day as it comes.

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I was hale and hearty, working and had lost 23 kgs. The next I wanted was a baby. I had had a miscarriage earlier and now that everything was going fine, I wanted a baby desperately.

After my annual check up, I was given the green signal but both the neurosurgeon and the endocrinologist made it clear that I would be needing hormonal support as my pituitary gland was not functioning properly.

So upon returning back home we sat down with my gynaecologist and planned. I would be needing injections for support(Merional). And the Dday was to be in September 2005. There would be ultrasounds every alternate day to check on the size of the follicles. every evening I was to take the injections sometimes one ampule, sometimes more. My husband used to inject me at home as he is a healthcare professional adept in medicine dosage, treatment etc. It helped us a lot because he and my gynaec both did a lot research, and it was like the whole of Bahrain rose to support us. The nurses smuggled us good syringes. (it is imperative to get fine quality syringe as it reduces pain. Selling syringes to common people is banned here).

But in spite of all this support, we didn’t get the desired results, sometimes there were multiple follicles, sometimes I swelled up like a balloon, sometimes I would scream at the nurse and the doctors.( the hormones would make me behave irrationally).

By March I had lost heart. It was taking a toll on me. The physical pain was somehow sufferable but what I could not endure was societal pressures as well as the suffering of my husband. I could not see his moist eyes whenever he used to inject me.

And so I said that I wanted to quit. Both My doctor and husband agreed. But come June he convinced me to try for one last time. Around this time My Dr. came to know that there was a new drug (Umagon)in the market but it was a controlled medicine and available ony in select hospital and for select patients. Again our contacts came to our rescue. One injection fell short, it was a friday and our contact was not traceable. SO my husband went to that hospital and tried to convince the pharmacist. He did not budge. So he told him my story. The pharmacist yelled and asked him to go an stand near the entrance. Dejected my husband went and stood as was told. After 10 minutes the pharmacist came and gave him the ampules and what more he refused to take money, saying that if I conceived that would be reward enough.

But I had lost hope, I was supposed to fly in July for vacation and had decided that I would not return home. I was hoping to take up some job in Pune

Meanwhile my brother called up asking my itinerary and hearing my strained voice asked what was the matter. I told him that I was again on injections. He conveyed the same to my mother whose prayers started-‘let her pregnancy confirm when she is in India, if she conceives whilst in Bahrain who will look after her etc’

And so on July 11th I packed up my bags looked around lovingly at the house which we had made a home and left.

But that was the day that there were multiple bombings in Mumbai, I was to go to Mumbai first meet my sister and then proceed, but I had just checked in when my husband called up asking me to come out of the airport, I refused and proceeded.

It was all high tension drama in Mumbai but I made it to my sisters home the next morning. I was subdued but my sis assumed that it was because of the bombings.

I proceeded to Vizag and upon seeing my parents; the dam broke. My mother uttered only one line-Everything is not lost yet.

I returned home 13 months later with a 4 month old son in my arms.

Of the numerous names that my gyanec calls my son two are- ‘ my miracle’ and ‘Krishna prasad’

48 hours

It was 5 am, I lay on the hospital bed, the past events flashing through my eyes in slow motion; I was to be operated in 3 hours for pituitary adenoma. The whole night nurses had been in and out, to check on me, to put nasal drops, as the operation was an endo nasal one.

I had been quite courageous till last evening, wanting the end of all my problems until the curiosity got better of me and I had asked the assistant neurosurgeon where the tumor was and he in his enthusiasm had pointed it out and then I had known that it lay just below the brain, just in between the eye nerves and then…. I was shaken up. The phone rang just then, it was my husband, work commitments had seen that he could not join me in this crucial moments and so he stayed back in Bahrain while I came down to Vizag for check ups. 8 days back I had been diagnosed with the tumor and then My brother had rushed me to Krishna Institute in Hyderabad for the surgery. I apologised to my husband for any wrongdoings I might have done in the past 2 and a half years. Yes it has just been that much since we had got married.

It must have been some 12 hrs later that I came out of the anaesthesia to a darkened room, a nurse came and asked, Hello how are you’, but apart from her figure i couldn’t see anything. It was then that I started screaming, ‘I can’t see’.

My brother was rushed into the ICU, he asked me ‘ Do you see me?’
I said ‘Yes’
‘What colour shirt am I wearing?’

I opened my eyes wide, concentrated and then said,’Red’.

‘See, you can see’, he said. but I knew something was wrong.
My neurosurgeon came and said ‘Why are you worried, we are there with you, whatever it is, we will solve it.’

And so they stayed with me one after the other throughout the night, holding my hand, murmuring encouragements.

I thought hard, a couple of months back I had a blind spot in my right eye and later when my MRI was taken,, they said I had haemorrhage, maybe I had haemorrhaged again, maybe like the Doc said I would be fine, maybe………

Next day they took me to take a CT scan on the pretext that they had to check whether my surgery was done well and then a nurse came near and said, ‘Madam please sign this consent form’
I screamed,’ How can I, when I can’t see’ The surgeon literally carried her and threw her outside the scan room.

In the afternoon they said that they had to change my nose pack and so were taking me to the Operation theatre, I nodded but knew that I was to be operated again.

Some hours later I woke up to again a darkened room and got scared. My father some time earlier had given me a mantra to recite and had said,’ WHenever you feel afraid recite this, 5 times at least.’

And so I would recite this 5 times and then fall back asleep, then again 5 times and so the cycle continued.

Sometimes in the night I got a shock, something like a shock when my whole body was thrown from the bed and all the equipment attached to my body started jangling, the ICU staff came running, made me sleep again and left. But I noticed that I could see a little.

I got such ‘shocks’ 5 times that night and each time my sight improved. In the morning when the nurse came to clean up the ICU residents, she saw me smiling at her,’ CCCan you see me?’, she asked.
‘Yes I said’, she threw her tray somewhere and ran. Within moments my team was with me hugging me. My neuro surgeon came with a glass of water and said, ‘Now you can drink as much water as you want.’ (the previous two days I was not allowed to drink as my stomach had to be free of fluids for surgery)

I was discharged two days later, my vision was not 100% but I could manage and there was hope that it would improve.

So was it a miracle or was it a medical miracle, I do not know; but I just know that on that fateful night in 2004 I cried out for courage and got much much more.

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Submitting this story for ‘Get your story published in the Chicken Soup for the Indian Soul-A book of miracles at the BlogAdda

Hello world!

So here I am, in a new avatar, a new space. Sometimes you need to reinvent yourself, sometimes start anew like a phoenix. Why, what, let the questions remain. It was necessary so it was done :).

So here I renew my process of self discovery. Yes, here and there I will bore you with my kavitas and stories. But so what, don’t we all discover ourselves in various forms.

Limits

There is so little we can do
Except to do our best
and forget the rest.

So many dreams
So many hopes,
but few will come true.

What is in our hands?
Except to do our best
and forget the rest.

The sky is high; the ocean is deep
Bur can I reach the sky
and touch the ocean floor?

What else can we do?
Except do our best
and forget the rest