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Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Sweat is, at times, pricier than blood

Certain things in life are not cultivated; they either exist or they don’t. I feel my penchant to become a Surgeon had been an ordeal of my ultimate destiny, and I carried this as a part of my Kismet. I suffered my own share of ups and downs in the pebbly ride of my professional voyage; yes, I used to feel less jinxed during the gall-filled moments that could have overpowered someone with fewer proclivities to accomplish a defined aim. No one is blessed the Godspeed just like that; one has to earn every pie of it.

Since my early college days, I had always been so excited to see myself as a Surgeon that I used to work very hard to have a firm grasp of my subjects. Had I not been innately motivated to wear the white coat one fine day, chances are ripe that a stumble upon could have sucked on my energies and I would have either not succeeded in my profession, or would have changed my profession altogether. I had a pretty normal college life. I also used to feel bogged down at times by the work burden , but then the next moment, when I started to realize that these are the stepping stones of me being ushered into the league of Surgeons, all the associated uncertainties and boredom used to thwart away.

Sweat is, at times, pricier than blood; I have always given it my one hundred percent whenever something required hard work and dedication in my professional realms; yes, there had been this driving force that I had to be the best, and it worked most of the times. The ‘hurry-hurry’ person eats goat; the one who takes his or her time eats beef. Even to this day, I don’t consider myself to be a veteran; every day is a day to learn something new, and that is precisely the beauty of a mind captivated by surgical sciences.

Déjà vu or Programming?

Have you ever looked upon the sky on a cloudy night? If you have, I am sure your gaze must have got transfixed with little deviance of your mind. That is the power of Nature; or shall we say some kind of déjà vu? If you ever happened to be alone in a beach and observe the tides, chances are bright that you would have attained exemplary nothingness in your mind. Have you ever got drenched in monsoon with no acquaintances nearby? How did that feel? Would you want to re-experience the enchantment of those moments? How do you feel when you come across a face that eludes nothing but innocence? Aren’t you left spellbound?

Why do we feel at ease in certain situations? Why do we feel longed for in certain situations? Do these events and occurrences belong to some sort of left-over representations of our numerous celestial avatars? Or Nature has coded us in a way that we feel warmth, contentment and joyous in the company of its primordial elements? What effect does thunder-lightening induces on your psyche? Do you think fear originates from objects and subjects or from within your own self? Do you believe in the eternity of love? I place my bet on the fact that love is the precursor of the Mother Nature. Every man for himself and God for us all; self-preservation is the first law of nature. But then what is ‘self’?

RML Hospital, My Alma Mater

During my stint at my Alma Mater, Dr R M L Hospital, New Delhi, I used to start seeing my admitted patients and in spite of starting my ward rounds early, these used to extend till early afternoon. This exercise used to be followed by surgeries in Operation Theatre; those were the days when RML Hospital was known as Willington Hospital. The patient load at Dr R M L Hospital used to be colossal, and we had to work really hard taking care of all the patients in our unit. Once our unit chief went for a vacation and could not join on time due to his own reasons. In those days, I and one of my very able colleagues, managed the unit on our own. Those were such good days; work used to be the only passion.

The entire hospital staff was like an extended family. When we used to perform some good case, we used to celebrate with the nurses and other medical staff by arranging fast food. I made some real good relations with staff nurses out there; and even to this day they visit me on Raksha Bandhan to tie the sacred rakhi on my wrist. The days were never dull; there was a chutzpah in every moment. There was so much to learn from life, which was pacing at an aggressive momentum to load us with the fundamental values of this profession. As time passed by, I became quite popular in Dr R M L Hospital and on rare days when I used to be a bit late, I was missed by my colleagues and seniors during those absent minutes.

Those days were so lustrous, so spirited that memories of those days still lie lily-fresh in my mind. Those days made me the self-willed and headstrong individual that I am this day; I have never allowed a day to bygone without really putting its events into the machinery of my brain for an in-depth analysis. To think is what I love the most; thoughts are my constant companions and I can never be left alone in this world.

I love you all my patients

A lot of times my poor patients give me such honeyed comments that I am taken aback. I am taken aback instantaneously without my will or efforts. They call me their messiah, and they never forget to bring me home made delicacies, hand made gifts during the festive season. They love the fact that I take interest in their lives. They feel ingratiating that I know most of their family members by names. It is no that I am approached for the medical disorders by my close-held horde of patients; they approach me for their personal and social problems as well. They trust me that whatever advice I would render would be the best one and that is the driving force in such situations. I have been made to intervene a lot of family feuds where I hold regard from both the parties involved in bad blood; and in most of the cases, my decisions have been duly respected. I feel good. 

I am not a doctor for whom there exists a demarcating line between professional and personal worlds. A lot of things that I do professionally embark on my personal spheres and the vice versa is also substantially true. Sometimes I wish I had copied down all the incidences of my life that happened after I started my hospital; I have seen the aspects of life and relationships in such a diversity that I am sure a lot of human behavior related theories could have been inferred from my experience. And I don’t want to be self-aggrandizing to take all the credit back home myself; I am sure a lot of doctors feel the same way. Patients come to us and uncover their problems in details. In a lot of cases, the source of their problems lies in their lives, in their minds, in their relationships. We become witness to them and this never ending process of learning keeps on going and going.

7 tips for anger management

Arrange a timeout: This is imperative; only those who have practiced it know its importance. Whoever told you that counting till 100 is for kids only must have smoked something gross. You ought to take a break from the circumstances of the heated moment, to be able to assess the situation from a different perspective.

Take deep breaths: Yes ! If you know how to meditate, you are so close to master the art of killing the angst prematurely. Deep breathing takes your concentration away from the problem and in turn, dilutes its memories. It is said one who knows art of breathing knows exactly how to keep anger under check.

Drink some water: More the merrier! It has been shown in numerous experiments that drinking water does something detrimental to the life span of anger and you must note that down. To enhance the effects, drink every gulp with a lot of savoring. Make your affair with water a grand one and prized one.

Get some physical exercise: Physical exercises are known to provide that vent for suppressed emotions. People go on for instant running, or weight lifting or brisk walking or any form of exercise they indulge in, the moment they start feeling their anger level escalating. Exercises release a spurt of positive hormones which restores the body’s environmental mileu to the optimal level.

Think before you speak: Only fools speak just like that; a cultivated mind knows the words that would be shooting from the lips. Anger suppresses the tolerability and wrong selection of words can create mayhem; don’t allow yourself to get provoked and think twice before you utter a sentence.

Identify possible solutions: Focus on something that takes your attention away from the anger source. Identify the reasons for your outburst and look out for the measures to contain it right there. Remind yourself that anger won't fix anything, and might only make it worse. As they say ‘Don’t go near the water until you learn how to swim’. Either lower down your threshold of the repetitive stimulus that causes you anger or plainly learn to modulate your mind using bundles of practicality.

Use humor to release apprehension: Humor is the antidote for all anxieties and angst. Use it effectively and watch your humor-proclivity-index breaking records along the y-axis. Don't use cynicism or sarcasm, though — it can hurt feelings and make things worse by contributing to misunderstandings and keeping grudges.

First illness of my life

During the first week of my life, beneath my seemingly glowing angelic skin, not everything was as normal as it appeared. As the days passed, my skin color started turning yellow. I started regurgitating out and turned sluggish. As if I started paying out for my past life’s sins in eagerness; how else can one relate a childhood illness? I was examined by the pediatrician and was diagnosed to be suffering with ‘Neonatal Jaundice’, a condition that takes place soon after birth and is characterized by development of deep jaundice. I was given conservative treatment at first, which included a lot of intravenous fluids and allied medications. 

My parents passed sleepless nights on my hospital bed, as in those days infant mortality was quite high and refractory neonatal jaundice was not a common phenomenon. Hopes were taking a jolt and gloom was the predominant emotion in my family. It was then that my pediatrician announced to subject me to an interventional procedure, exchange transfusion. This is a process in which the blood is made to pass through a machine in which the blood is filtered to thwart the toxic levels of bilirubin and other metabolites. I was made to undergo left sided exchange transfusion that very night; by that time my face had lost all its sheen and vitality & I had started getting dehydrated. But then as they say ‘faith will move mountains’, affection of my parents and competency of my doctor put me back on the pedestal of life, with double the vigor.

Random moments to cherish

The olive-coated voice of your love interest when you met first.
The chutzpah of childhood.
The thrill of overpowering someone in a game where you had been an underdog.
Your highest academic exploit.
The all time favorite tune of yours; which you consider yourself to be a part of.
The moment when you realized that life has more hidden meanings than some of the supernatural teleserials put together.
Mixed feelings when you flip down one of the old family albums.
Waiting in the crisp attire and bated breaths to be interviewed for the first time in your life for that 9 to 5.
Touch of icecream to the tip of your tongue.
Cumulative sound of hundreds of cuckoos, on a bright spring morning.
Pulling the window curtains to allow first ray of light enter your room.
Cuddling with your kid.
Suddenly coming to know that you actually shed tears watching a film.
The day you converted a foe to a friend.
The affection in your parents’ eyes when you outperformed yourself to make them happy.
When you start relating bits of your life with quotes from others (and you actually spend hours searching quotes).
Someone calls you with such an incredibly familiar tone that you instantly succumb to an induced déjà vu.