You are Alone But not Alone

alone yet strong; a tree
Standing alone

Let me begin this way.  This tree, standing alone on top of the hill, is alone but strong.  It reminded me of some of the adversities that decorate our lives.

Sports, whether we play or not, everyone set our interest at least in one discipline.   Due to the skill and speed involved I love football, especially English Football.  Cricket, on the other hand, I find it to be time-consuming and slow.  In English Premier League, I enjoyed watching Liverpool FC playing.  I was always mesmerized by the crowd cheering and singing “You’ll Never Walk Alone”.  Someone, who is always supporting us, is what we want.

Naturally, we enjoyed companionship and togetherness.  Man is not created to live in solitary.  When the cheering crowd fainted, and the going gets tough.   The road seems are lonely, we want someone by our side.  In my hospital bed, reflecting on my past and the good times spent were cherished.  The only thing I can do is to talk to God and hope for a better future.

Hard times are what made our life worth going.  If you do not face tough times in life, you do not live life to its fullest yet.  But in these times, we have someone who is always by our side to comfort us.  Those who can recognize it found happiness in suffering.  God said, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.”*

You are alone but not alone, someone told in my hospital bed.  The word is blunt at first but says a lot.  Because it open my heart to feel the One who is always with me through thick and thin.  For many, the time spend alone are the sweetest.  If they are able to fight through these times, they surely will find happiness in life.

To have that feeling let me list out what the Scripture tells us to do a few things amongst many. (James 4:7-8)  Submit yourselves to the Lord and resist evil.  God loves those who fully submit to Him.  Submit wholly, submit it to Him.  He will save you.  Come near to God and He will come to you.  The space maintained between God and you should be zero.  Nearer my God to Thee…says the songwriter.   Purify your heart, don’t be double-minded.  Humble yourself to the Lord, he will lift you up.  When we humble ourselves before Him, we can declare,  “The Lord is my helper I will not fear.  Mortal beings will not harm me.”

The Lord’s presence always comfort me

And I know He is always beside me

Though adversities loom large upon me

‘Son, fear not!’ He whispers in my ears.

 

A Glimpse of Heaven: My Personal Journey

It was just another normal day in winter.  My body is still weak from the recent surgery but recovering well.

As usual, with my son, we wake up early and go for a walk in the park on a wintry morning.  Soon we get back home, had our breakfast and began our day.  Had just underwent Brain Surgery last month but it seems I am recovering well.  So even a small time spent with my families is sweet and treasured.

It was almost noon when I feel something was wrong with me.  I told my wife to get help from neighbors and bring me to hospital.  My wife called our neighbors.  They rushed to our place but by the time they reached I remain unconscious.

They brought me to a hospital, they told.  However, as I remain unconscious I remember none of the ordeals.

My wife told that they brought me first to Safdarjung Hospital, which is about 10 kilometers approx. from our residence.  On being there, I was given some quick medication and was given oxygen through mask.  But then, they had to rush me to GB Pant Hospital, which was about 11-12 kilometers from there.  GB Pant Hospital was where I was operated on 14th December, 2016.  On being there, I recovered in the Emergency Ward.   But as for me, when I regained consciousness, I found myself waking up in the Intensive Care Unit, as they already shift me there.

All through the ambulance journeys, from our residence and my short stay at Safdarjung Hospital, to GB Pant Hospital, I knew or felt nothing as I was unconscious.  These are my recollections base on what they told me:

During those hard and unconscious times, I knew I was there somewhere else, which was totally a different scene.  I was there in the middle of the sky, up from the earth.  There I saw a huge and brightly lighted home that slowly moves towards me.  By the time it came close to me, a gently slope stairway with around 10-12 stairs came down by my side.

Then I saw a huge door, which was open for me.  Inside that huge door was a place filled with light.  The kind of brightness in that light was different.  It must be full of the Tree of Life.*  It was soft and never seen before light for me.  That was a place of life.  It seems to be full of oxygen.  I very much wanted to go inside that door.  There is this feeling that when I entered that door, I would started dancing and be “very much alive” there.   This is the place where there would be no more death.  My sickness would disappear.  Everyone would jump and dance in joy, this is how I felt.  The light, brightness, and the look of the place I find it hard to describe.  I don’t know what to compare it with.

With great excitement, I put my left leg to go up the stairway.  In that moment, I heard someone calling me from a very far off distance.  I could barely hear her voice.  But I recognized the voice was my wife’s.  Though I saw no one from that huge door, it seems someone is there and watching me.  I said, “Lord my wife and my children are still there.  They will need me.”

So I turn back to find her.  But then, when I look down, I saw her deep down there on earth.   They are very far from me.  She looked sad.  She was there sitting in great distress.  But it was dark around her and the place was filled with black dirt in comparison with what was before me.

That was when I felt I am back.  All of a sudden, I knew that door and stairway are no longer there.   That was the last thing I knew.

Back at the Hospital, my body was in severe pain when I regain my consciousness.   I longed for that place where I had almost been, but to no avail.  Many times I would say to myself, had I entered that door I would be very much alive and well.  But now I have to fight the pain on my body again.  However, all sickness and the pain was worth it as I catch a Glimpse of Heaven.

During this episode, I was there inside the Ambulance or either in the Hospital fighting for my life.   In other words, it all happened when I was shift to different places in an ambulance or in a trolley.

But then I thank God to see the light of another day here with my family.  Though it takes many days to recover from that, I am happy.  That is a reminder of where we would be after we are done with our life here on earth.  Now my father and my brother must be there spending time with our Savior.

In medical term, I underwent right Amygdalohippocampectomy on 14th December, 2015 to help cure my epileptic disorder, which I was fighting for more than nine years.  On 19th January, 2016 an episode of Status epilepticus occurred, that lasted for so long.

I felt blessed and obliged to share this.  Also, I feel humbled to have a glimpse of Heaven.    All the prayers held for me are my lifeline now.  I am happy to be alive to tell this to you.

More importantly, I feel blessed to be accepted as a citizen in the kingdom of God by the blood of Jesus Christ.

God bless you!

*Read Tree of Life (Genesis 3:24, Revelation 22:2)

Amygdalohippocampectomy: removing the amygdala, a surgical procedure

Status epilepticus: a dangerous life threatening condition in which epileptic fits follow one another without recovery of consciousness between them.

Hope keeps you afloat: A Loner’s song

At some point in life you have no escape route

You don’t know why you are here and none bothered

You seem to stuck deeper the more you try to move out

Your hard work paid off when it seems you are doing fine

Hope, hope, hope…keeps you afloat.

 

At a late stage in your life hit a wall and stumbled upon

Bound by string of responsibilities put upon you

Where you simply cannot succeed anymore to take care

Where you simply cannot think the way-out

Hope, hope, hope…keeps you afloat.

 

The scent of happiness seems fainted away

Looked at everything and were unable to see the beauty of it

The beauty of what you observed are still intact

They never knew what is still inside of you

Hope, hope, hope…keeps you afloat.

 

You cannot see excitement in almost anything

Your life is becoming dull day-by-day as was your thought

They would assume it was a result of your own deeds

Oh! Where would you go? You’ve lost way

Hope, hope, hope…keeps you afloat.

 

It became a big task to search for in this stage,

When your time and resources are limited

The only hope is in Heavenly Father who knew it all

But then you were not good enough for Him as well

Hope, hope, hope…keeps you afloat.

Hope, hope, hope…keeps you afloat.

An Old and Rusty Small Boat

One evening, two friends were late from work, on their way back home.  Darkness was descending fast.  All their friends reached home already.  They were more tired than yesterday.  But they have to cross a river on their way home.

All the boat seems to have left already.  There was this old and rusty small boat, which was left for them. They are happy to have one anyway.

Someone was spying on them, they felt.  Near the bush, was an old man who came forward and offer help in their situation.  For the two friends, it was awesome to have company in this situation, so they welcomed him warmly.

A second old man was approaching them, who told them he was always there in this kind of day.   Now they had two old friends with them.  They looked experience in whoever the field they worked.

“We don’t need to introduce ourselves.  Soon you will know who we are,” they said. “But we are not good friends, anyway,” the second old man added.

Now they boarded the old and rusty boat.  The river current was stronger than yesterday.

Soon the second old man said alarmingly, “We must go back.  We are going to get drowned, we won’t make it to the other side.”  The two friends don’t know what to do.  In reality, what they heard seems a good advice in their situation.

The first old man watched them patiently.  He uttered, “As long as this old man is here, we won’t be able to move forward.   We must throw this old man in the water.”

“Why?” they asked astonishingly.

“Look young man, my name is Faith.  His name is Fear.” He said.

“So?”

“Fear and Faith cannot be on the same boat,” he added.  “And that is why we are not good friends.  But we happened to exist together everywhere.”

So they threw Fear in the river and strive forward to cross the river despite the strong current.   They crossed the river and that is when Faith told them he did his job.  So they thanked him and go their own way.  They reached  home safe and sound but most importantly with great lesson learned.

Had the first old man not win the game, they might go back or drowned in the river too. This happens many times in life.  Let no fear defeat your faith in God.  Have faith, pursue your goal.

A Surprise and stunning words from my Son: A privilege

We were sitting in the living room engaged in our own interest.  We did talk in between just to speak our mind.  The small conversations we had are unexpected and prompt. My son looks weaker than yesterday.  He was not sick as yet.  The next day, he had mild fever.

From where he was sitting, my son told me he wanted to say something. When  I nod my head, signaling  him to go on…

“Papa, you know, during those days when you and Mommy go to office everyday.  I used to be very lonely and I cried most of the time,” he said.

“Oh my! was it?” I said.  It was very shocking and I was surprised to hear that from his own lips.  He was only 5 years old by now, and how could he remember that and come up with.  It left me stunned.

“I was alone at home,” my son continued. “I was with one person (our helper at that time), I used to sit near the telephone set waiting for your call.  In between, I used to cry a lot.  You should not leave me like that anymore.”

“Oh! sure, darling,” I replied quickly.  “Now, why did you say that, son?”

“Because Papa, I miss you so much.” He said.  Those were his lonely days he can recalled.  I never thought he would feel that way.  Nor do I believe he would still remember those days. As life goes on, we have to work that way to earn our living.

I explained to him every little details of life as much as I can.  “If God permits that will not happened again,” I assured him.

Now that being said I try to recollect those days.  Every morning,  when we left home for work I saw him sobbing most of the time, although we tried our best to let him understand the situation.  I do feel happy to call from work but sometimes only to hear his cry.

Now I feel happy I can be with him, although I sometimes missed being busy at work.  This kind of day with my son makes my decision to quit work to stay with them more encouraging.  It was an emotional day.  We respect his Mommy for her hard work and care for the entire family.

I tell this not to convince people and not to seek support.  But I tell this because it kept me motivated and out of love for my children.

It is a great privilege to spent most of your time with someone who really needed you and love you purely.

Living with Epilepsy: A Neurological Condition

Fresh out of college, he was ambitious and happy.   To meet his immediate financial needs, he secured a job in one Multinational Companies.  Now, he was able to buy himself books and practice books for competitive exam in the Public Sector.  Moreover, his joy doubled when his parents agreed with his decision to marry his sweetheart.

Oh! What is that!  While working in his workplace (backend office operations) , first attack of epilepsy came in.  He didn’t know it was epilepsy though.  Nor did he know how severe it was.  However, medicines help him keep the epilepsy under control.  It seems nothing serious is coming to come up soon.

Just after one year, his hard work paid off.  He had a chance to switch his job and he started working in banking sector.   The Bank happened to be the largest PSU bank in the country.  There they lived happily for the moment.  Almost everything seems to fall in place for the time being.

Soon his medication had to be altered many times during which series of hallucinations and side effects of the medicines become a nightmare.  Many times he had to bear the brunt of the illness in his workplace and worst effect was in his preparation for competitive exams (for jobs).  But still, he was happy enough to secure Masters Degree in Political Science over a period of time.

They had been blessed with a son and a daughter after five years of their marriage.  It was a game changing moment for them.  It gave him a new lease of life.  They are the pupil of his life.  But they are living in a place far off from their parents.   It was hard to find help in times of need.  So he left his full-time job to be with his children while his wife worked hard to put meal on the table.  She became the sole bread earner for their family, home away from home.

Nine years since the first attack of epilepsy, the Doctors advice the need for brain surgery to remove the affected portion of the brain.  With no choice available, he willingly underwent right Amygdalohippocampectomy (removing the Amygdala).  The surgery was a success it seems.  He recovered well.  But one more episode of status epilepticus* occurred just one month after the surgery.

After the surgery, he had what they called associated migraine, which becomes a major hindrance in everyday life.  But with the help of medicine it can be controlled at some level though.  Life was a challenge and privilege for him to live.  The illness becomes a major source of his strength in the Lord.  His prayers keep him moving.  The Lord God was good enough to spare his life and grant him a chance to be with Him closely.

At times he was depressed but he was blessed good people by his side to help him recover.  His wife and children are his cheerleaders for the many moody days that come more often.  He wondered, living with epilepsy was a privilege in some way or not.  There he was, waiting for better times to come along the way in life.  Each day he has something to battle by himself, whether mild or severe pain.  Life is hard and that makes it worth living.

Hope, yes hope is all he had.  That too, he almost lost it sometimes.  Many times he prayed to his God to give him the chance to guide his children in the light of the Lord till they become an adult.  Also, to fight for or with them when life’s tempest tossed.

Dear Lord, kindly grant him his prayers but as it is Your will be done on earth.  Give him the courage to live on till he came home to be with you!

*a dangerous condition in which seizures last too long or follow one another without recovery of consciousness between them.

Into the woods, long-lost dreams

There they go into the woods.  Treading down the muddy path, trailing behind a herd of their domestic buffaloes. Dressed in shabby clothes, which are either very loose or too small for them.  Anyway it suited their surroundings, it seems.

They would slipped often, or the grass cuts them, almost in every exposed parts on their body.  They have no time to care for their wound.  They said to each other, “Time will heal.”  And, that’s what they can afford the most.

They would often recall their friends enjoying their new series of video games.  In the woods, under the rain, what can they do?  While the buffaloes are enjoying the downpour, there’s nothing to enjoy for them.  They waited patiently for the rain to go while they shivered uncontrollably.  Their body becomes pale due to excessive rain.

“Oh! where are our buffaloes?” shouted the elder brother.  For they wouldn’t dare to go home without them.  The animals are their liability as of now. They are the 20th Century village boys living in the hills, nearby the Khuga river.

The rain had stopped, at last.  However, it was too slippery to roam around in the wild.  They sat in the grass waiting for their shabby clothes to get dry.  They shared their dreams for the future, it is about ime when they could earn their own living.  Sometimes their words seems to get lost in the woods itself.  However, they are contented as they  have hopes.

“We shouldn’t be here for long.  Let’s get going,  when the time comes, we will be able to change our living conditions,” they said hopefully.  Now that they found their buffalo herds, and it’s time go home.

With time flying by, the elder brother always work hard.  But……he’s gone too soon.  They are not able to work on their dream project together.  It seems like a long-lost dreams now.