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“Then there were days, when I couldn’t drag myself up, get dressed up and show up with that fake smile.
I couldn’t tell who was more tired? My body or my soul?
What was more broken? My heart or my mind?
Like all the other deadlines, we are allowed only a certain amount of time for being sad. And when that has passed, even the people close to us grow tired of us being sad, depressed or confused. Truth is, at the end of the day, it’s you alone in your fight. Fight for your own happiness. The contentment. Fight for your inner peace.

Sometimes, the smallest of fights take the biggest pieces of us.”

–An excerpt from my new article ‘The lost pieces of me’. 😊

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Here I stand,
a seemingly serene girl.
It’s so loud inside my head.
When you look in my eyes,
You see the storm in my soul?
The longer I stand here,
The louder this silence.
Where do I run to,
Who do I confide to.
Is there an escape?
-Tasha

Sometimes, Life gets you!

There are days when life gets the best of you. Life becomes messier and situations become tougher. Nothing feels right and everything goes wrong. But ain’t that what’s life? When you learn to play the game by its rules and master it. That’s when the rules change and every next level becomes tougher than the next, that doesn’t mean you stop/quit playing the game? Then why give up on life? 

“Nobody promised that life would be easier neither did anyone say it won’t be happier. ” 

Here’s a good piece I found on this:
A short post after quite a while. 🙂
-Tasha

I’m an oncologist and I know my patient will die.

5.00 am in the morning. The phone is ringing continuously. Half awake, I answer the phone. On the other side is my assistant saying, ‘Sir your patient with terminal colon cancer has passed away’. ‘Oh!’ I exclaimed, trying my best not to feel the wave of emotions that just hit me. But, the single word ‘oh’ had summed up in it, all of my dismay, frustration and grief. After absorbing all these feelings in a part of my soul, which I wish to hide even from me and ignoring the heart sinking feeling, I went to bed again. Closed my eyes, took a deep breath, tried to sleep and prepared myself for a new battle tomorrow.

Doctors, as people say, have the noblest profession because we save lives. I’m also a doctor. Like any other doctor I fight death for the life of my patients. But I’m different and so is my story. I’m an oncologist. I fight, I struggle and many of the times I lose the battle in the end, but not hope. Yet, I fight the hardest of battles than any other doctor. I say this because firstly, in a time where every doctor specializes in treating a single region or organ, I treat the whole body. At a given time, I treat a number of patients, all of different ages with different diseased regions. Every day I have to learn new techniques, keep my knowledge up-to-date and my skills polished as I don’t know what nature will bring up next in front of me. I can’t show up unprepared. Nature and fate shall test me and my knowledge at every stage and failure isn’t an option for me. Still an oncologist must always be prepared to lose because I lose battles as often as I succeed. The key, though, win or lose, is to never fail. And the only way to fail is not to fight. So, I fight until I can’t fight anymore. Secondly, I’m the hope of my patients in distress. There’s this thing that happens when people find out that you’re a doctor/oncologist. They stop seeing you as a person and begin to see you as something bigger than you are. They have to see me that way to trust me and believe in me. But only do I know, I’m just like everyone else, unsure, flawed and normal. So I act strong, I remain stoic. I hide the fact that we’re all too human because I have to satisfy and give my patients a hope to live. When a patient comes to me, he is completely hopeless, turned down by a number of doctors and his only wish is to hear from me that he’ll survive. Nobody wants to be told that they have cancer. The news of suffering from cancer itself inflicts an enormous mental trauma on the patient and his family. My job is to keep their hopes alive, besides knowing all the bitter realities of the disease that my knowledge has taught me. If my textbook says, that only 10% of a certain type of cancer patients survive, who am I to judge that the patient sitting in front of me is not among 10%. I have no right to take away his hope of living and to declare him dying, while there is still a tiny bit of hope and fight behind. So, I take up the depression and distress of my patient on me and transfer to him my optimism as much as I can. So that when he leaves my clinic, he leaves with hope, with courage and with the determination to fight for his survival along with me.

Adjusting the knot of my tie and the white coat, that marks my identity. I look at the time on my watch as I enter the oncology ward. Wearing my most compassionate smile, I start the rounds. After a hectic hour of checking up on patients and adjusting their further treatment plans, I move towards my office. I hear my assistant calling out that biopsy reports of my new patient have arrived and are placed on my desk. At that moment, I felt an adrenaline rush in my body. As I entered my office, my steps became heavy but rapid. My heart beating hard and fast against my rib cage like a child’s heart would race before his report card is handed over to him. Taking in a deep breath, I opened the file. As I go through the figures mentioned in the report one by one, a little piece of hope dies within me. Finally my gaze becomes fixed on the bone marrow biopsy result stating “Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia”. Given the extent to which the cancer had advanced, this was no good news. At this instant, I just felt sad. Extremely sad. Had it been diagnosed a little earlier or the patient had come to me a little earlier, I could’ve saved this patient. I could’ve done everything in my power and saved this patient. I couldn’t only buy the patient more time but also give her back her rightful life. But now it was too late and I was helpless. Just as I was about to close the file I caught sight of the patient’s age: 10 years. My heart broke. An image of my daughter popped up in my mind, whom I had just dropped at the school few hours earlier. Her innocent eyes and her naïve moves. What a gem is my daughter to me and here someone is about to lose that gem of their life. As an oncologist, all I could do was provide her the palliative therapy. That would mean making the rest of the time period that she stays alive, free of pain. If I can’t save her then the best I can do is lessen her pain. Make the quality of, what’s left of, her life better. At this point I wouldn’t go for something heroic. Something that might make this journey of hers more difficult and painful for her and the parents. I will just try my best to lessen her pain and buy her as much time as I can. While I was still lost in my thoughts, there was a knock on the door. The assistant informed me that the patient and her parents were here. I signaled to send them inside. Feeling their presence in the office, I lifted up my head. There she was. That little angel. Holding her mother’s hand and half hidden behind her. As they walk towards my desk and seat themselves, I notice my little patient. She is pale and weak now, but in my mind I can imagine how she must have looked like when she was healthy. She had luminous blue eyes. What a perfect personification of innocence and purity was that child. Turning to her parents, I started the routine session. “Hello! I’m Dr. Ali and I’ll be your daughter Sara’s doctor from now on.”

As I saw them off, all I could think was how cruel and unfair life is. Little Sara was the only child of her parents. She was born to them after 10 years of marriage and now they were losing her. She was slipping through their hands and they, themselves, were helpless at the hands of fate. When I had taken Sara for the general examination, she said she had a question she’d like to ask me. I told her she could ask me whatever she wanted to. Then she asked me, “Am I going to die?” Her words felt like a stabbing knife in my heart. For a moment, I just stood there, looking at her. Then I replied, “No dear, I’ll be making sure that you stay fine. But why do you ask this?” At this she looked up at me with those teary blue eyes and in a very slow, secretive manner she began, ‘Because every night when my mom puts me to bed and thinks I’m asleep. She kisses my forehead, my hands and my cheeks and she cries, she cries a lot. Then she makes long prayers to God. She asks God to give me back to her. To not take me away from her. I know I’m sick and that is making my parents really sad. I don’t want them to be sad because of me, so doctor can you please make me well?” At this I was left stunned and speechless at her deep love for her parents, observation and astuteness at such a small age and her innocent little request. “Yes, I’ll”. But for that you’ll have to help me by following all my instructions, okay?” That’s the moment when I decided to treat her with chemotherapy and delay her departure from her parents as long as I could. Why do I even try when the barriers are so high and the odds are so low? Why don’t I just wind it up and go home. It’d be so much easier. But it’s because in the end there’s no glory in easy and nothing compares to those priceless moments that those parents could get with their kid. Now I’d be seeing Sara after her first chemo session.

Today is Sara’s first follow up after chemo session. She walks in, looking paler and weaker than before. But her eyes more luminous than before. As I examine her and check her reports, she can’t stop telling me about her experience of chemo. Telling me how the medicine felt like pricking pins in her veins. How she vomited several times after the session. How she feels tired now all the time and the new lesions that keep forming in her mouth. And how she is afraid to go for it again. To ease her, I tell her that I will be there next time. Before leaving, she just asks me, ‘Am I going to be okay?’. I reply, “yes, why not.” Not even sure myself of the real answer.

3 chemo sessions and 3 months passed. Sara lost all of her hair, her nails turned black. Her body aches. Her symptoms worsening. All my plans and all my hopes failing. Nothing seems to be helping. As much as I want to help this little patient of mine, I keep losing her. The heartbreaking reality is that I watch that little girl fight a deadly disease like cancer so bravely and I can’t help despite all my knowledge and skill. I assess myself, re-evaluate myself, replay the whole case, to see if there is anything that I could have done and missed out on that. But all in vain. I did all that was possible. All that could have been done. Its 11.00 pm and as I’m about to leave my clinic I get called to the emergency. I rush and to my utmost dismay, the patient is none other than Sara, bleeding out profusely. The surgeon decides to take her to surgery immediately. I decide to go with her. I just can’t let go of my patient like that. Here, in the OR, time seems to stop. I stand here watching the surgeons trying to stop the bleeders and in the end, alas, fail. Here I lost one of my most precious patients, once again. God took away his little angel and eased the pain she was in. Maybe that was the only way it could’ve been.

At the end of some days, shutting off office light, locking the door, crossing the empty parking lot to the chilled dark car. I, the oncologist, who is not a hero but just someone trying to help. Can still feel that exhaustion, that world fatigue, for what I’ve seen, what I’ve done and what I have lost. I take a deep breath, shake off that blank stare and head home to my family, but with the determination and satisfaction that I’ll return to join a new battle another day.

“Learn from People’s mistakes”.Do we really?

Have you ever been told “learn from people’s mistakes”? There’ll always be someone telling you this now and then. And if you don’t take note of it and end up making the same mistake, dozens of told-you-so’s are going to rain down on you.

We humans were born to make mistakes and learn from them, not to fake perfection. Mistakes are a part of human being. The life given to us comes with a full liberty to make mistakes. After all, freedom is not worth having if it does not include the freedom to make mistakes. The privilege that we don’t get is to repeat those mistakes. We all make mistakes, it’s how we come back from those mistakes that matters. Our mistakes don’t define us, but how we deal with them, what we learn from them and how we apply the lesson to our lives.

“To make mistakes is human, to stumble is commonplace, to be able to laugh at yourself is maturity.”

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Now that making mistakes is somehow justified, there are two things that matter the most after you’ve made a mistake: owning your mistakes & learning from them. If you make a mistake, show at least enough courage and compassion to own your mistake. More people would be learning from their mistakes if they weren’t busy denying them at first place. Your mistake might not hurt the people around you as much as your denying it hurts. If you did it, own it and deal with the consequences. Don’t add insult to the injury by not owning your mistakes or by repeating them. What people don’t get is, mistakes are made to learn from them not to repeat them. Repeating them may just ruin everything. Don’t push people far over the edge because eventually they’ll become tired, even the people who love you. Every mistake almost always ignites some consequences, face them and make up for your mistakes. If there weren’t any consequences, that doesn’t mean what you did or said wasn’t really bad. You never know how bad it hurt from outside just like you can’t judge an ocean’s depth from the shore.

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When it is so hard for us to learn from our own mistakes, how can we expect to learn from people’s mistakes. The truth is we DON’T learn from people’s mistakes. We may make a deep observation of them, make notes to ourselves to not land in such situations and maybe also take every possible caution to avoid them. But once we land in the same scenario, we almost never apply all those advises and all those thoughts-to-self at that time. We find excuses for ourselves and how somehow our situation is different from the others. At last, we end up making the same mistakes, continuing the pattern.
The reality is that when someone else makes a mistake, only he’ll know the agony of facing its consequences. No one else will, the way he does. Once we suffer some sort of emotional or psychological stress, we’ll remember for life the situation that led to it. But when you are just the audience you might not relate to it that deeply, so you won’t learn your lesson. Maybe, that’s just how we are cut out to be. 🙂

One can always try to learn from people’s old mistakes and make some new ones. As we do have the permission to make mistakes, but not to repeat them. 🙂
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Happy “Over-rated” New Year!

What exactly comes to your mind when I say “The most over-rated events of the year”. Well, a number of them will pop in your mind. For how I see, one of the over-rated event in  a year is “New year eve”.
New Year eve – As the new year approaches, in no time will your facebook news feed will be flooded with ‘new year resolutions’ and promises to self to live the life fully in the coming year. I mean, Seriously? Does it really make a difference? The new year eve can give you an excuse to go wild, party hard till midnight and end it with the countdown. How exactly does that one night change your life? Your life’s gonna be as crappy the next day as it was the day before. You’re gonna wake up on the same bed, go to the same workplace and be surrounded with the same people. Understandably, the wishing process always goes on and we always wish things to happen. But wishing that one eve suddenly grants you all that you wish for in life and things fall into place as you want them. That’s unrealistic and childish. Yes, the concept of coming new year may give you the motivation for a fresh start but nothing is going to change until unless you are ready to make changes within yourself.

“You’re your own master. Before you expect, remember: 2015 will be the same as 2014. If you do the same things, with the same people”

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So let the new year encourage you to take a fresh start. Try to not repeat the mistakes you made last year. Make new friends and discover your life more. But do make an effort to let these things happen. Don’t expect these things to come to you just like that. Don’t just sit there wishing and expecting. Get your dose of motivation from the event, enjoy and just don’t go on over-rating the event. After all, it’s just a day like any other day. 🙂
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“My new year’s resolution is to stop lying to myself about making lifestyle changes.”

What were your new year resolutions? Belated Happy new year! 🙂

Busy Doing Nothing

It’s been quite sometime that I’ve posted or written something. I did start writing an article but didn’t complete it. The reason? I was busy doing nothing 😛
‘Busy doing nothing’, the time-off all of us need every now and then. It’s actually the time when you disconnect and enjoy your own company. There so much to do for yourself in that “doing nothing”. We all can relate to this because we do it from time to time.
This ‘doing nothing” consists of :
1: Clinomania : Desire to stay in bed all day. If not that, wake up real late. Now that it’s winter, this is the killer one. Only if you could take your quilt and bed with you everywhere. Ah! The Charms of Winter.

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2: Not having to set the alarm for next day or for just anything. Now that’s some real happiness.
happiness-is-not-having-to-set-the-alarm-for-the-next-day
3: Long Hot Baths: First, you don’t want to step in the shower. When you actually step in there’s no way you’re coming out until you run out of all the hot water.

giphy (8)4: Stay in your pajamas the whole day or wear clothes that are double your size.
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5: Occupy the couch in front of the television. Staying there for ages and in case you lose the remote control you’re too lazy to reach for it.
giphy6: Eat all you can. Who knows you might as well end up cooking for yourself.
giphy (13)7: Not wanting to move an inch. Unless you really have to.
giphy (15)8 : Surfing the internet and most probably end up stalking some random people’s profile. Ending up with over 20 tabs open, with all the random stuff that you kept opening.
giphy (12)9: Keep procrastinating: You keep delaying things that you had to do and shift them to your later plans.
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10: The only decision you have to make is whether you should eat or sleep or how many other ways are there to do nothing.
giphy (16)Well to people we may seem to be doing nothing but Oh hey! we’re really busy at the cellular level or who knows we might actually be waiting actively for our problems to go away.Afterall, it’s hard to do nothing. You never know when you’re finished. 😛

How do you kill your time when you are just too lazy to do anything?

Do share your thoughts. 🙂

That’s for now. Keep following for the “new year” article.

“You’re Not You: Honestly Recommended”

I usually like to watch movies of horror and thriller genre. This movie was the first of the kind and it was just a random watch. I had no idea of the plot and ratings. The best part is, it turned out to be one of the best movies I’ve seen lately.

Here’s a short review of the movie.
The movie starts with glimpse of the happy married life of Kate (Hilary Swank) and Evan (Josh Duhamel). Kate is a professional pianist who plays on concerts. It’s on her birthday that she discovers that she is suffering from ALS when she is unable to grasp a glass properly and plays the wrong notes on the piano. Then the movie fast forwards one and a half-year later, when her disease has progressed so much that she demands around-the-clock care. Evan, being a good husband, is trying to provide that in every way possible for him. After firing her last nurse because she made her ‘feel like a patient’. She is interviewing Bec (Emmy Rossum) for the job, who’s late for her interview and shows up hung over and smoking at their doorstep. Kate hires her despite Evan’s detestation for her. She takes a bad start including making mocking comments on Kate’s impending death, unable to work with cutting board and blender, and dropping Kate helpless in the washroom.
As the movie progresses, it shows how Kate’s worsening condition brings her marriage to rocky grounds,she starts losing her friends and how she forms a bond with Bec. Bec helps Kate let loose and give voice to her underlying frustration and Kate teaching Bec some degree of self-respect and responsibility.
Both the ladies have done fine acting. Hilary swank has done justice to her role really well. Though she has some moderately clichéd scenes of cinematic suffering, it’s her look of resignation as she struggles to turn the pages of a magazine, or her quiet discomfort as strangers attempt to shake hands, that really convey the brutality of the disease. The movie has some powerfully emotional individual scenes that make tears well up in the eyes.

For me, this movie defines the fine line between sympathy and empathy that most of us fail to recognize. It conveys the strains of the terminal illness on the sufferer’s spouse. On the other hand, how pity & sympathy takes over the love and warmth of a relationship. There’s more to it, than to just take care of the sufferer as a patient. No one likes to be invisible or become an imposed responsibility.

Some of my favorite lines from the movie are as quoted:

– “He turns me over in my sleep. He feeds me. He bathes me. He does everything but breathe for me. Believe me he’d do that if he could.”

– “Why is it that… we want the ones that don’t see us.. instead of the ones that do?”

 – “That’s the thing about giving up. You don’t realize you’ve done it until it’s too late.”

– “It’s not about her. It never was. It’s about being invisible.”

 – “You’re not you. You’re me.”  


 Have you seen the movie already? Or still have to watch it?
Share your views about the movie. 🙂

Permission to change: Granted or not?

Constant change, the world we live in is all about it. You change the way you dress according to the latest fashion. You change your old cellphone with a latest phone because it has more features or only because you wanted to. Its a dynamic world that we live in. But when given the question like for example ‘you guys used to be best friends, now you don’t even talk to each other’ and almost all the times the answer is ‘he/she changed’ or ‘they’ve become a different person’.
Yes, that’s where I’m getting to. We want change in everything around us now or then. But when the people around us change, we just can’t accept it. We don’t give people the freedom of change.
As a human being and a person we have evolved since our time started. In my view, we all change because our life changes from time to time. Its nothing surprising. Ask yourself. Are you the very same person you were 5 years back? . The answer would be ‘no’. You have evolved in your emotions, in your reactions & in how you handle people. This is necessary for the survival. As you grow up, you learn the bitter truths of life. You start accepting things that you once denied. You learn that you can’t always speak your mind. You can’t always have things your way.

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Why we can’t accept it?
Change is something to which not everyone adjusts well. As much as this change is important, people will still have a hard time accepting it. That’s because we always want the people to stay just the way we met them. We have a hard time letting go of the picture that we made in our mind of that person, the first time when we got to know them. The change in them threatens us and leaves us insecure that it’ll drift them away from us. Sometimes this change does drift people away but at other times it doesn’t. Either way we have to accept it.
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Why we should accept it?
When we ourselves don’t stay the same, why do we expect the people in our lives to stay the same. Isn’t it ironic? We all evolve, all of us struggle through life. You may not see it but everyone’s busy fighting their own fight, big or small. Why do we always forget that every fight that we fight in life, leaves a scar on our souls and its meant to stay there. Either you can keep mocking the person about their ugly scar or just accept it the way it is. You can’t blame the person for being a certain way they’re. Everything that happens in our life changes us in a certain way. The change can be good or bad. That depends on how they let the stimuli of change effect them. So, the statement ‘you know, you’ve changed.. You’re not the same person anymore’ is a Hippocratic statement in itself. We should give people liberty to change.

There are never enough justifications for change, so don’t ask for them.

Though not easy, let the people change & accept it. Don’t try to bring back the older version of them. Don’t even expect. Don’t hurt yourself more in the process of change. That’s how life works. Just let go of what you remember of them or the memory of who they were will haunt you down every time.
Change and let people change. Let life process continue.

So in your view, should we give people the liberty to change? how many people you knew changed and grew apart? How hard was it to let go of how you used to know them?

Late Replies & their lame excuses!

 

We live in the world of technology. Texting is a normal daily routine in our time.

In the world of texting, there are two types of people: The good, nice people who reply back instantly and others who take ages to reply.

Late replies are not welcomed by anyone. They trigger a whole lot of different feelings. For instance, when you text a friend with an immediate urge to have a conversation about some saucy gossip or anything and they don’t reply back while you sit there waiting like ‘going once, going twice, going thrice… do I see a reply?’ And nah, still no reply. The very first feeling you have is to pick up a baseball bat and go beat the crap out of the person. In other instances when the person replies to you after a day or two and they be like ‘Oh hey! What’s up? ‘. At that time you don’t feel anything like that and all you want to do is ignore the mere fact that they ever texted back.

The primary feelings when expecting a text are experienced by almost everyone (psst people in relationships experience more intense feelings :-P).When waiting eagerly for a reply and not getting one, its followed by :
– Frustration & anger: ‘Oh hey no one’s idle. In a big, big and busy world I chose to text you, so even if you’re busy the least I expect is a quick reply or a reply, at all’. There, that tiny bit of expectation is what ignites the anger and frustration.

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– Making assumptive excuses: ‘He/she might be sleeping’, ‘He/she might be out’ and our mind goes on & on to make assumptions and excuses on the part of other person, just for our own peace of mind.
– Sadness: Still after so long, no reply arrives. You feel a subtle wave of sadness. This ones very true for the one who texts first. It feels like maybe the other person isn’t interested in having a conversation as much as you are. Then you repent your move of texting first. Maybe this has made you seem ‘needy’ or you are just disturbing the other person.

Let’s not just give ‘late replies’ that much of a bad name. Sometimes, late replies are in your best interest. They signify to be thoughtful and have been carefully assembled. Oh well! At other times they are not and people make up lame excuses to reason for their late replies.

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Five most common and lame excuses that people use are:
1: I didn’t get your message
This is the new ‘dog ate my homework’. Period.
2: I was out
Oh? Where? On mars? With no network coverage or on the sun that your cellphone melted.
3: I didn’t see your message.
Seriously? In an era when Facebook, instagram, dictionary, & blah blah, have shifted to phones. You don’t miss out a message. You even open the network service messages.
4: I was on call
Oh really for like 6 hours continuous? Or a day?
5: I didn’t have the credit to reply.
Ummm… Facebook, whatsapp, BBM, viber all dead? RIP?

So share how you feel when you’re expecting a text and your experiences. And what do you think about this article?