As I wake up, Dad and I discuss about Mom’s discharge and things we need to ask the doctor. The usual routine of her Chemotherapy begins. It is the last day of her five day long Chemo sessions. As the session begins, I feel a little guilty of being tired of this place. Today, the same place that nearly frustrated me does not look so bad. The patient next to Mom’s bed has her mouth swollen. The tumor is in her lips and it is three times bigger than its normal size. The saliva drips out of her mouth all the time; that is the reason for her mouth being covered with towel most of the time. Her husband is by her side, nursing her. He is gentle as he wipes her mouth. I wonder if the husband has loved her as much all his life. Then there is the frail lady at the far end, the doctor has come to visit her. He asks her to walk in a line for him. She is feeble and she can’t walk straight. The doctor tells his son, this can result in fractures in her bones so he asks him to be careful and monitor her closely. As the doctor leaves, the lady talks to the sixty something lady by her bedside and tells her how the medicine has made her weak and she was supposed to be discharged a week ago but she’s still at the hospital. I notice they share a special bond. Their eyes speak; they tell each other “I know what you mean, I understand”. Then there is another couple, on the right of the frail lady. The husband is looking after his wife, helping her to get settled before the doctor visits her bed. He gently unties the scarf on her head; I can see her hair has completely fallen due to Chemotherapy. There are few remains of frizzy hair and it looks a little (forgive me for this) scary without the scarf. The husband tries to put together those remains of her hair and wrap the scarf around her head. It does not work the first time so he does it again. I look at his face as he wraps the scarf around her head for the second time. He has a warm kind smile on his lips and his eyes are filled with love as he gently presses the scarf to gather all the frizzy hair to form a neat knot at the back of head with the scarf. This is not an uncommon scene here at the hospital. As much as we see disease and sickly people we see and experience love, care, togetherness and healing. It is very painful at times to be at this place but I have also found profound peace and love at this same place. The mother son duo opposite to our bed is friendly. They are to be discharged today. They share some of their experiences at the hospital with us. As they take leave, the son touches my Mom’s feet as heleaves and that makes my Mom emotional. After this observation, I make peace with myself for being where I am. I feel proud and privileged to be with Mom at a time when she needs me the most. I try to settle my wandering eyes and open a book.
Tag Archives: love
I am at the Kathmandu airport and I’m waiting to board the flight. After I land at the Delhi airport, I take an hour long taxi ride to the hospital. I feel good for being back to be with Mom. I enter a familiar place, I reach mom’s room and there she is resting in her bed. As I see her from a distance, I notice she is not her happy self anymore. The smile on my cheerful Mom is not the same. As the dye on her hair fades, I can see traces of her gray hair, she has lost weight and her cheerful nature is not visible anymore. I don’t know why but I was expecting to find my healthy mom, the way she had been before she got the disease. It has changed her a lot, both physically and mentally. Yet she is high in spirit, I hug her and she’s very happy to see me.
I settle down for a five day stay at the hospital. I look around. Some of the faces are familiar, the nurse is familiar, some of the patients who are here for chemotherapy, the helpers and the staff, they are all familiar. I settle in and I’m happy and at peace to be with mom. I look around. There are around seven beds in this room. There is a lady in her fifties, she is very thin for her age and built. She looks like she is just 35 Kg, her son is with her. In the next bed, there is another woman, she looks like she is in her 60s, and her attendant is talking to the thin lady. The thin lady asks her if she’s admitted in the hospital for chemotherapy, the attendant tells her that the lady in her 60s finished her chemo sessions but her life is not the same. Every once in a while there are some health problems and she has to get admitted often. They both lock their eyes for a while as if they’re still communicating and get back to their respective activities. There is a new patient admitted just next to my mom’s bed. As she enters the room in a wheel chair, her mouth is covered with a face towel. Her husband is by her side, her husband and the helper struggles to lay her down on the bed. She finally settles in. I take a glance at mom to check on her. The scene makes her sad and she turns on my side and closes her eyes attempting to sleep. Just opposite to my mom’s bed, there is a rather healthy looking Punjabi lady around the same age as my mom’s. She is accompanied by her son. The son is taking good care of her, asking her if she needs anything, and peeling a banana for her. Farthest from our side there is a little girl with her mom. The girl is young around 10 0r 11 years of age and she is restless. Her Mom is admitted. As my Mom tries to sleep, I open a book to re-read the last part of it. The writer talks about the war in Afghanistan and describes the injuries and wounds of his fellow inmates. As I read this interesting journey, I think of the pain they suffer and the pain in this particular hospital room. They are similar yet so different. This pain is uninvited, unwanted and much against the will and knowledge of the bearers. The pain in the war is anticipated, known and the bearer is prepared in some way to take the pain and suffering. The pain in the war is somewhat planned and the consequences are obvious where as the source of pain in the hospital is unknown and the patients ponder upon their fate and destiny as they struggle for their lives. Besides the pain there is one more thing common in the warriors and the patients. They both fight with honor. The warriors fight with honor for their own cause expecting something in return at the end but the patients fight with honor with no expectations for a cause that is yet unknown to them and for a cause that might never be known to them. The pain is similar but the source of pain is different, very different. I travel to remote mountains of Afghanistan along with the writer. I forget for a moment that I’m in a hospital. The dialogues and the conversations in the book intrigue me.
P.S You can catch the prequel to this post at At the wedding, Returning to an empty nest.
The wedding is over, I say the goodbyes and I return home. Someone drops me home and I know there’s going to be no one at home. It is around 6pm, it is winter and it’s a little dark outside. As I walk in, there is no electricity because of load shedding. I go to the puja room and I sit there for a while. It’s the room where mom medicates everyday and it is calm and soothing in here. I tell myself, everything is going to be fine, I smile and I go upstairs. There is no electricity but there is light in one of the rooms. I sit there and read a book. As I read the book, my mind wanders. Before we left for Delhi, we all were so happy. I was finally back from my 2 years of graduate studies. Mom was happiest to have her kid back in the house. Everyday we cooked different kinds of food and invited guests over. Life looked so normal. Soon it was Dashain and Bua was excited about the elaborate goat meat menu we would be relishing. Mom had started complaining about her recurrent stomach pain that would not go away. We had taken her to a hospital in Kathamandu and we were waiting for some tests to be done which was postponed for a week because of Dashain. We all had no clue of the upcoming storm. I was happy thinking about the good things that were coming my way. My life had been just the way I wanted it to be. I had a good job offer in hand, I was relaxed, I was home and I felt like my life was finally taking off the way I wanted it to. I guess this feeling was what we call the silence before the storm. I knew this experience would take way the “nothing can go wrong” philosophy out of my mind. I will always know our world is not perfect and that anything can happen we just have to learn how to deal with the situation.
I am glad that I’m leaving for Delhi tomorrow to be with my parents. Someone drops me at the airport and I can’t wait to board the flight, take a taxi, go straight to the hospital and hug Mom. She must be eagerly waiting for me. Although she never mentioned over the phone I’m sure she must’ve missed me.
P.S This post is the continuation of At the wedding.
The music is loud and we are dancing to the same song “Sheila ki jawani” for the third time in a row. The song ends with a roar of laughter and we rest for a while to sip a drink. As we take a sip, another bollywood shaadi number rolls and we’re on the floor. We ask M for a solo and she dances sexy and awesome, she’s got the moves and we’re all awed by her. As the laughter roars again, my mind travels miles away to Delhi, I think of mom I take a deep breath and head out of the room. I miss Mom and I’m scared for having so much fun and feeling what I am feeling. I panic, I think of the pain and I panic. I feel an urge to talk to Mom, I’m scared. As I punch her number, tears trickle down my cheeks and I’m scared for being so happy because I know life is a cycle of happiness and sadness and I’m scared to feel free and feel light thinking the next feeling might be something I felt when we found out Mom’s got cancer, a severe type and the diagnosis is not so good. I get scared and I panic and tears roll down my cheeks. Mom picks up the phone and says “hello”. I’m relieved. We talk about how her day was and I inquire if everything’s going on fine. She tells me about her daily activities, asks me to convey my regards to the bride to be. After that she tells me not to worry about her and have a lot of fun at the party and warns me not to drink a lot of wine and beer. I try not to talk to her for long, fearing she might sense my fear. I say goodbye and promise to call her the next day. I walk back in the room; the ambience is intoxicatingly fun and light. They are still dancing to another silly bollywood number, I join in but the energy is not as high and I’m relaxed to be tensed. My fear subsides but its there and I’m relaxed that the fear is there for as long as it is there, the next feeling is going to be a good one and not a worst one, and I’m a bit relieved to believe so.
I was in Delhi since last few months with Mom to get her the treatment she needed. I came to Kathmandu for few days to attend my best friend’s wedding. Mom and Dad wanted me to attend it and take a break from the humdrum that’s been going on for months.
P.S This is post is out of my diary 2 years back. At that time Mom had been diagnosed with Cancer and I was in Delhi with her for her treatment. It will be a short 5-day series with short posts straight from my personal diary. The posts will be devoid of pictures but hope you guys will read through it regardless.
A and I have been together for almost 2 years and we’ve been married for about 5 months now. Its been a jolly ride since we’ve been together and I love my life with A. Almost all my friends in this blogo-sphere have a rocking relationship with their spouse or husband, which reminds me how lucky I am to have a rocking relationship like you all :).
Every couple is different and each relationship works in its unique way. Today I want to share what makes our relationship work.
- We try not to judge each other. There was a time when I thought that A was of a certain type :P. At that time I didn’t know him that well and was judging him based on the “circumstances”. But as I got to know him, I learnt how wrong it was to judge someone. Once I let this initial ice break, it has been a pleasure to discover him. He is not a perfect person and neither am I. We both know this and we’re perfectly ok with each other.
- We are friends first. On top of everything else we’re friends first. We enjoy each others company a lot. We are not the type of friends who are all praises about each other. He is my first and foremost critique. Well, it doesn’t feel good to be confronted for your not so good side but A confronts me anyway. At first, I may be upset or even argue but at the end I always come out a better person. We do not sugar coat each other on unnecessary things. If something needs to be said, we say it but we also explain why and make each other understand and often we end up smirking on what an a** we’ve been at a certain situation.
- We love and respect each others family. When you get married to a person, you marry the entire family, even the extended family. We make it a point never to small talk about our respective in laws. We both understand its a very sensitive area. I love my parents and so does he, we both know the importance of family and we never judge each others family about the petty little things. This way, I can talk about my own insecurities regarding my parents with him and vice-versa knowing that we’re just human after all. And this applies not only to our families but to our friends too.
- We adapt. At first when I met A, he didn’t know anything at all about cooking. When I mentioned the word cooking at home, he used to get irritated for having to spend his evening doing something as silly as cooking when you could easily order anything from outside. But we’ve come a long way since then. A not only helps me to cook but he has started to enjoy cooking now. On the other hand, I was very introverted and shy about sports. I didn’t know how to play any outdoor sports. But now, we play badminton every other evening and I enjoy it a lot.
- We have our freedom. If we go to a restaurant, we don’t hesitate to order the dish that only one of us likes. Although this freedom was not easy come, we both have learned to understand that we are two individuals. It may sound silly to put this point here but for us its definitely worth a mention. At the beginning when we were dating, I used to be annoyed when A didn’t eat the food I ordered for him or didn’t say “I’ll have whatever you order(for me)”. He always said,”Ok lets order that but I’ll have this one today”. I had seen all my friends and their spouses having no problem at all when their wives/girlfriends ordered food for them. But A is not like that. He has always known what he wants and this goes for what he wants to eat as well.
- We compromise. Yes we do compromise. One example is the kind of movies we want to watch. A is fond of action thriller, horror and detective movies. I am fond of drama, reality based and romantic movies. I get tired of watching all the violence on screen but I watch it anyway. A feels sleepy during the drama movies but he watches it anyway. Apart from this, we compromise on many more things without remorse and this is what makes our relationship stronger.
And the list is longer but these are the basics that make our relationship work. However there are things that we’re still learning about each other and we are still on the phase of discovering each other. A relationship brings discipline in life, it teaches us to live above ourselves and think of another being first. I feel blessed to have A in my life. It all makes sense, he is a perfect match for me. The other day we had a little dispute with our friend. All of us were saying a thing or two but he was silent. When I asked him why, he talked about Gautam Buddha’s teachings by saying, “We all could win by arguing but before we argue we have to be able to differentiate if the argument is worthy of what comes after it”. He went on to say, I am not against putting our points forward in an argument and we could be telling the truth but what we have to learn is to rise above and think is it really worth it? Will it really make things better? If it does, I would be the first one to voice out but if it doesn’t whats the point? I could not refute him and I was glad about it.
Above all, we both have learned to be a better human being from each other and this is what makes our bond even stronger.
I am an ordinary person and I have lived an ordinary life. I keep discovering myself every day. I have always been drawn by mysterious philosophies that revolves around human emotions, sentiments and the life we live. Isn’t it strange how people behave in a certain way? How events occur and how it leads to a situation that we never even imagined we would be in? My story with A is something like that. I have always been teased by P, my best friend regarding the possibility of A and me being together in a relationship. I was never to know, her innocent yet casual thought would come true in the most awkward and unlikely scenario.
A was working since last few years in the same company that I work in. He was the only Nepali in this company before I joined. I had had few conversations with him over Facebook which was generally regarding how the company was, the working environment and so on. Even though we graduated from the same university, I had never met him. I had only heard of him.
When I arrived at B city to work, I hadn’t informed him of my exact date of arrival. When I arrived at the place where I was supposed to stay, there he was, at the corridor of the same floor where my room was booked. My first thought was, damn I should have informed him about my arrival! Then we just exchanged an awkward conversation and he wished me goodnight and went back to his room.
As I opened the door of my new room, I had no idea I was opening the door to my new life with the person I just saw and met at the corridor. I entered the room that night and took a deep breath, I was relaxed and excited to be where I was. I came to B city because I wanted a life of my own, independence is something I’ve always loved and freedom is what I had longed for. Living with my parents at K city was a safe but boring option. Especially at that time, I really wanted to get away from the responsibilities for a while. I wondered why did I have to meet him there that too in a purely co-incidental manner. I could not help thinking this could be some kind of a sign, but at the same time I laughed it out loud(literally). I told myself that my imagination is silly and dismissed this fancy idea. I was not looking for a relationship at that time and as it turned out later, neither was A!
As days passed by, I seldom thought about it again. But there was something in him that I was drawn to, not exactly in a romantic way but I liked talking to him. We went along pretty well and we talked for long hours. But I was not particularly fond of his careless attitude towards his life. His friends would always brag about how good looking he was and how girls would buzz around him like bees buzzed around a flower. To me he was just an ordinary guy. One time I even told his friend that he is just an ordinary guy, not so special and there are many guys like him in Nepal, his friend did not quite like my candid expression about one of his closest friend, obviously!! Duhh!!!
As I got to know him more, my perceived idea of him and his natural self always contradicted. He was nice, humble, down to earth and logical guy.
There were frequent casual conversations with him after that which lead to knowing him more. He had well adapted to the environment he was in for over 5 years. He had little expression on his face, had a nice smile, seldom looked me in the eye when we talked. This made me look into him more, made me want to find more. I didn’t have a slightest clue what was in store for us and I guess neither did he. Everytime I met him, the depth of his light eyes had some ethereal appeal to it. The more I looked into it, more it drew me to it. We were hanging out with the same circle of friends. This meant, having dinner together, going out to the city together and all other group activities. By this time, we had established a certain kind of relationship. Our friends used to tease us on our favoritism for the fellow countrymen. I guess in a way I brought him a little piece of Nepal in B city. I frequently held dinner parties in my room and treated everyone with Nepali food but A enjoyed it the most. We celebrated festivals together and it bonded us, yet we were unaware of what was to happen.
Then slowly, I wanted to be around him more, wanted to breathe in the same air he breathed out. When I look back now, those conversations at dinner, times spent playing cards after dinner were little excuses to spend more time with him, be with him. When I think now, why was it that I wanted to be in his company, the only thing that comes to my mind is how simple it was for me to be happy and carefree when he was around. How easily he made me laugh and how contempt he would look when I smiled at his jokes. Yes this was it for me, the simplicity of life and simplicity of being myself when he was around, the simplicity of him being himself when I was around.
He is a simple kind hearted person who cannot not make anyone sad. But yet he is very strong willed and knows what he wants. He wanted simple things for himself. He is emotional, sentimental, a tiny bit of self centered and human in every possible way. The person who was to come in my life, was him. It was not so easy for me to accept what was happening. The little confusions existed in the beginning. I tried to escape from what I was feeling. When A first asked me the possibility of us being together, I had been hesitant and reluctant to verbally accept him and say “yes” but my actions were a clear yes.
In a way, I had stopped believing in mad love. I had given up the idea of head over heels in love and convinced myself it only existed in fairy tales. I thought I would grow to love someone I lived with, I didn’t believe in the idea of crazy love at that point in life. The idea of romance, the sweet pain and longing that comes with it was missing in my life at that time. Although I have always had this surreal almost perfect idea of love and romance, I thought it didn’t exist in reality.
But love knows nothing, it does not tell right from wrong, it does not distinguish good from bad, it has no boundaries and it flows, it cannot be captured nor confound. It knows no language and it knows no evil. And just like that love happened for us as well. And the rest as they say “is history”.
P.S: Happy Anniversary A.
Life is filled with uncertainties. Although many scientists and dreamers likewise would want to invent equations to perform accurate predictions to forecast or even get a hint on what life would lead to, until this day of so called modern times, it has not been quite possible.
My life is no different from yours albeit it does have its own uniqueness, it still follows the same path of uncertainties that your life follows. Human life has a pattern that follows the same route of childhood, growing up and getting old but in its own way it find its way of being unique like a piece of art or a designer dress that is of course an art or a dress but is unique and special in its own too.
When I was a child, all i wanted to do was play with my brothers and sisters, cuddle with my mom and enjoy delicious treats from uncles and aunts. When I grew up to be a teenager, I learned about friendship, companionship along with the discomforting feeling of rebelling against family and trying hard to be socially acceptable. Now when I look back I feel like those years were the most significant in terms of shaping up my personality and the way I am today. After that came the golden days of infatuation, when you’d be infatuated with any cute guy you see at school or on TV. I had and still have a huge crush on Rahul Khanna since his MTV days, I had secret crushes on seniors of my school about whom I had endless conversation with my girlfriends, without any valid conclusions, of course!! It was a classic era, we girls would gather in a special corner in school and talk about all the guys we secretly liked, I wonder if todays’ teenagers still do the same.
After that was stuff like career choice, what field of study to choose, whether to study abroad or get admitted in a local university, and then was engineering days. Well, there is a whole other story behind my choice of taking up engineering as a field of study but as I mentioned, life is uncertain but the things we do and the things we choose sure does lead us to the ultimate truth or the ultimate significance of our being if we follow the signs….well at least thats what I think!!:).
Then came along the big lessons in life, the ones that I wasn’t quite ready for like mom’s disease, heartbreak, loneliness and struggle to discover myself and making peace with where I had come and what I had become. These were the big uncertainties in my life that I didn’t have a slightest clue about. I was more than shocked and heartbroken to discover that mom had cancer. She was and still is the centre of my universe. Throughout my life I have been so close to her that at that moment it was impossible for me to imagine life without her presence. It took understanding life to a whole new level. It taught me life is uncertain and our time is limited. Those days that I spent at the hospital were the days that made me appreciate life and love the people around me even more. This experience cured me of negative thinking and life felt good when there was hope and when the impossible looked achievable.
After that incident, life has been a bundle of Joy. It made our family stronger, friends closer and enemies farther away which were the negative thinking and wrong attitude towards life. Then came along A, the love of my life, my darling, whom I love with all my heart and soul. Ever since I saw him for the first time at the corridor, life has been better with its little surprises. Even as a stranger, he had looked after me and taken care of me. He has been around in times of need and he has provided love and support beyond my needs and expectations. It is his innocent eyes that remind me how beautiful my life is with him being around. Today, I am happy and at peace. I am getting married early next year and I am looking forward to have a wonderful life ahead :). My hopes, aspirations and ambitions have changed with time as well. I hope to be a good person, aspire to love and care for my family and dream of giving back to the world the same support and love that it has given me in my own little way.
And not to mention, I have found a medium to express myself to the world, I have discovered blogging. It makes me true and honest to myself. It encourages me to pursue my dreams and share my experience with numerous people around the world who feel and experience similar things!!:)