I had recently come out of the ‘ring’ of Engineering and was called an Engineer. God had also bestowed me with a job to earn my livelihood. Though I was in the 23rd year of my life but was yet to learn life’s lessons and intricacies. It was an easy going affair for me and was also the same for my friends those days. Apart from the daily routines our leisure time had no utility; it was mostly spend in games, sports etc.
It was one of the summer weekends in Bangalore. During those days my accommodation was in a rented single room. I was sharing the room with a dear friend ‘Aadil’. That day myself and Aadil had a nice lunch. Our post lunch activity was usually playing games on my PC. I was very bad at playing PC games and today I did not wanted to play computer game so was insisting Aadil to play some music or a movie. He was not going to listen to me as he was very fond of computer games and was an expert in playing them. He said if I am not going to join him he will play with the computer. He was also not going to allow me control over the PC as I knew I would fail any wrestle effort with him. Annoyed with this I went away and threw myself on the bed which was placed at a corner of the room. I was feeling hot and frustrated partly because the ceiling fan in the center of the room was not reaching the place I was lying in a supine position. To add to my agony Aadil was enjoying the game and the air from the ceiling fan directly above him comforting him from the hot weather. I could not tolerate this enjoyment of Aadil anymore and thought to disturb this moment of his ecstasy. I looked around and saw a magazine besides me. I took it and randomly opened a page; I saw the picture of a lady. She was the lady who had taken my job interview; I realized that the reading I grabbed was my company’s quarterly magazine. Anyways, I started reading the article written by my senior. I was reading very loudly, in fact I was kind of shouting, Intention was to disturb Aadil. I read…
“I had been suffering from chronic tonsillitis ever since my childhood. My parents had decided for tonsillectomy many times, but had left it. When I was in my final year of engineering, about a month before my exams, I finally told them I was ready for it. I was told that it was a very simple operation lasting for about ½ an hour. My experienced friends also told me that eating ice creams was a must after this operation.
I had been suffering from chronic tonsillitis ever since my childhood. My parents had decided for tonsillectomy many times, but had left it.
The day finally arrived, and I was taken to a Nursing home in Vijayanagar . Hardly 15 mins at the entrance to clear the formalities and I found myself on the operation bed. There were 2 doctors and an anesthetist. The anesthetist held something like a mask over my nose. I slowly felt drowsy and slumbered into deep sleep. But deep inside, I could feel some instruments inside my throat. There was some kind of odd feeling in me, but not pain. I was supposed to be in deep sleep, I could hear the doctors speak but had not opened my eyes. After sometime, I heard one of them say to the other that it was time and I could be woken up now . There was one lady doctor, who patted my cheeks asking me to get up. I could listen, but could not open my eyes. I felt too weak to respond. The doctor waited for some more time and again came to me. She had by now sensed that something was wrong. She slapped me hard on my cheeks asking me to wake up. I could hear her speaking in a much higher pitch. Still, there was no response from me. I could not, even though I badly wanted to tell her how I felt. She went on slapping and pinching me for some more time. She came close to me and asked me what was happening and why I was not responding. Slowly, I could feel myself opening my mouth to say something. Before I could do that, my arms and legs suddenly lost control. My arms were just swaying from left to right. I suddenly opened my eyes. I tried to stop it somehow, but no, I did not have any control. Even my legs, I was just kicking around. I was shocked to see how my body was behaving even though I knew that I was not supposed to behave like that. By now, 3 other doctors had joined in, sensing that something was wrong. They tried hard to control my body. They frantically called other doctors and from their conversation, I could make out that my central nervous system was not functioning correctly. Then, they gave me an injection and tied my arms and legs. By now, I felt even weaker and could feel myself sink. The doctor came to me again. I could feel her almost pleading to me to know how I felt. “What’s happening? Please tell me…, please tell me……,” was her repeated requests. I could bring out only 2 words from my mouth: I……can’t……, the last word breathe was very difficult for me. I tried again and again, but no. The word ‘breathe’ was just not coming out. It’s a difficult word to tell out, especially when one cannot breathe. I could not gesture with my hands as they had been tied. I was now sinking even more. The 2 words were now coming out at very slow intervals and in a very soft unheard voice. I slowly closed my eyes. At that moment, I just thought about my parents who had been waiting outside for me. I also realized that when death is very close, this is how it felt. I could feel myself calm and peaceful, waiting to be taken. I was almost sure that nothing else could be done.
What is Life? That is a question which has boggled the human being all the time. And probably this question itself is the reason for existence of life.
I felt the doctor open my eyelids to check me. I could then feel a hand below my nose to check my breathing. After a few seconds, I suddenly felt a tube going through my nose. My heart suddenly leaped and I could feel my body being shaken up because of the sudden pump. The oxygen pump was brought just in time. They then checked my body, and found blue spots throughout. The blood had been poisoned due to the anesthesia given. They had to replace most of the blood. I blacked out completely after some time. The next thing I knew , I was sitting in a ward on the bed with my parents and brother around.
The doctors visited me and thanked GOD saying that it was a miracle. They also asked me to thank GOD for having given me a second life…
To this day , every event of that operation theater haunts me. But if GOD has given me a second chance, then there must be something I need to fulfill before my last journey.
My loud reading had moderated and gradually reduced to serious reading as I progressed through the article. For a while after I completed reading the article I forgot all the activity in the room and was just staring into the ceiling of the room. I gathered back and turned right and saw Aadil was clueless staring into his monitor. I asked him “What happened?” He said, “He is losing the game”. I Wondered “Why?” He looked towards the magazine I was holding.
That was an unusual state of mind we were at that time. The story of my senior stirred our wayward minds. It was a moment of that spark which probably happens in everybody’s life when you start thinking in a matured way. I often wondered and still do what was that thing because of which we behaved the way we did? I think it was ‘Life’ the subject of article. What is Life? That is a question which has boggled the human being all the time. And probably this question itself is the reason for existence of life. Various people in their own capabilities have tried to understand and demystify it. A single coherent understanding of the subject was not and probably will never be achieved. While we explore the instinctive desire to understand what life is; it is equally important to realize the natural yearning to understand the Importance of and in life.
If not anything, it can at least be said that the most important thing in Life is ‘Life’. Everything was, is and will be for life. This is quite evident. For instance If we ask ourselves a question “whom do I love most”? All answers, sincere or otherwise, will ultimately imply to us. The saying “Man is selfish by nature” may be true both in negative and positive sense. Any claims of unselfishness are claims of share in the absolute divinity. Selfishness is important to realize the importance of life. Selfishness of oneself should help us the identify selfishness of others.
There are many instances around when we see life on this planet being exterminated mercilessly as if a thing worthless. The worth of life can only be known by the one who has lost it. We can by some way realize the pain and sufferings of the people who have lost their loved ones but we can never realize the pain, suffering and the desire to live of the one who has lost his/her life. A life taken has been robbed of the only opportunity it had to live.
The article of my senior ended implying there should be some important things in life to fulfill before we die if there is not one then there could be no life anymore. Not all gets a second opportunity to fulfill the purpose of life. I am glad that I learned this precious lesson with her “Closed Encounter with Death” that Life is sacred and the sanctity of life is because of the purpose it has.