Monday, August 29, 2011

ऐसा थोड़े ही होता है (it doesn't happen like that)

I am not used to having the TV remote to myself. I had the chance last week. There was no mode of transport, laptop, internet or husband around. Me and the TV became very good friends. I thanked the emotional immediacy it provided by merely being around, without asking for anything from me. Expecially in the night when reasons begin to clamour and every sound is magnified to its demonish magnificence.

On one such night I began watching an eposide of 'Grey's Anatomy'. We never see it when my husband is around. This is something about doctors that I don't understand. They don't want to watch movies or soaps about other doctors. They always look at it realistically and say 'ऐसा थोड़े ही होता है' (it doesn't happen like that).

I watched on regardless. In one of the episode, a pregnant lady (Callie) gets into an accident and is rushed for an operation. As they are wheeling her in, she comes out of her own body and starts singing. One by one other doctors are singing as the operation is going on. All the operatic drama ends when life resumes its rhythm and Callie is back to consciousness (in a Hindi soap this would have qualified for a jubilant relative running out of the recovery room screaming 'उसे होश आ गया है' mimicking a shrill falsetto).

This person coming out of her body and breaking into a song would have made me go 'uuugghhh' at the creative liberties taken. But it didn't. It took me back to the times when I had just regained consciousness after a seven hour long operation.

There a song 'Tumhe aaj maine Jo dekha' from a movie called 'Kuch na Kaho' (I have never seen the fiilm, nor did I have prior association with it ever) kept running in my mind. It was as if I was standing and looking at myself being wheeled out of the OT on the beats of this song. 

Doors being flung swaying from side to side as if I am I am on the lower side berth of a superfast train....a young trainee holding me still in the side position so that the back doesn't touch the bed....a doctor shouting at him for not doing it properly.....'LD Flap LD Flap' he kept uttering in a loop....warm fluid running out of the corner of my mouth even though I could feel no sensation....wires stemming out as body extensions and attached to some beeping screens....lying with eyes closed even after regaining consciousness...the herculean effort that opening those eyes was (eyelids had vaccumed shut for the lack of any eyelash).....knowing that dad is waiting there with bated breath for me to open my eyes....the guilt of not wanting him to be the first person I wanted to see when I open my eyes....the pangs of not finding the person I wanted to see around....being extremely requesting the night doc...finally being allowed to get a few ice cubes to be placed on my lips....a teenaged boy admitted on the bed next to mine that night....screen being pulled around him...machines brought in....doctors shouting something about 'adrenaline'.....him being declared dead....other doctors leaving....his father crying and asking the duty doctor 'how can he be dead.....he is still breathing'.....the doc saying 'it is just the machine hiss...he is gone....we take him off the macine and he won't be breathing'.....the boy, the father the machine being taken away at some point in the father peeping in from the door to see if I was being given the ice cubes (he wasn't allowed inside)....that night was probably the longest night I ever had....waiting for morning.....knowing that there definitely will be a morning even though the night seems endless.......the restlessness of the mind in a still body (truly understood the book 'Diving Bell & The Butterfly' that night)

My body or mind didn't feel, hear or experience these things. I was watching all this as a third person right next to myself....all strung together to the tunes of a song I didn't even like.

So next time you feel like saying 'ऐसा थोड़े ही होता है'.....pause....maybe things like that do happen. Imagination is one thing but Art does immitate life. Maybe sometimes ऐसा होता है........

(Note - It has been 6 years but all I had to do was look up the song on youtube and close my eyes. I was sitting on that slab again....seeing all this crisply edited to the beats of 'Tumhe Aaj Maine Jo Dekha')


  1. vandna.... very touchy and a live portrayal !!

  2. "Imagination is one thing but Art does immitate life"... so true


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