Thursday, October 4, 2012

Blood in the brain, a healing journey Part 3

You see, in CCA work, as we discuss how we capture and narrativize what we experience in the field, we discuss the notion of bounded narratives.

Bounded narratives are drawn upon the notion that the stories that we tell our audiences are always displaced, always incomplete, always removed from the experience. How then does the storyteller live with the ethical implications of these incomplete stories?

How does one live with the knowledge that the story I tell today of an experience is not the experience itself, but some representation of the experience constituted at the moment of writing?

Writing then is an act of re-creating some version of the experience at the

My recollection of the many hours of wait after the surgery is one that is filled with uncertainty. Baba was unconscious the day after. When we would go in to see him, talk to him, he would not respond back. He seemed like he had crawled into a space deep inside. A space inside himself. I almost pictured him feebly hearing my voice through layer after layer after layer of impermeability...

The consulting doctor (this term refers to a senior doctor who is supervising a number of junior doctor) came in and shared with us that the excess fluid had been removed, the operation was successful. Beyond that, he was unable to share much with us, and we had to wait and see. Baba was scheduled to go in for his 4 vessel angiogram and that happened in the afternoon...we waited the hospital the entire day. The Kali mantra kept me company. Call kept coming from Kharagpur, from Hyderabad...

My colleagues from the Department of Communications and New Media stopped by. It was a sense of comfort to see them. Gaya brought in my work. Millie asked me what I needed. I told her I was cold, so she brought me a blanket and a jacket...

Wait, more wait, through the night, waiting for baba to respond. Still no response. No opening of his eyes. Still in some deep place of slumber...

Bhaikaku had found Ma's passport and had brought it to Moitrakaku for him to get the passport done. It still would take a few more days.

Day 3...

Eagerly waited for the doctor to arrive in the morning. Baba was not still responding, and we did not know the report from the angiogram. Did he have an aneurysm?

The doctor came in and I was called in from the visitor lounge just outside where I was asked to wait.

The angiogram report was negative. There were no anerysms found. This was a good thing, but also it meant more uncertainty.

Baba has still not woken up. The doctor noted that he order an MRI to see if Baba had a stroke. Other than that, it was hard to tell what was going on. He asked us to keep praying.

Dadabhai, my cousin in Wausau WI, who is a neurosurgeon spoke with me extensively, taking reports, noting down details, sharing his thoughts, offering interpretive frames.

The Kali prayer "Treilokya..." stayed with me.

Occassionally, both Debalina and I would call his name, would say things to him. The nurses asked us to keep talking to him.

"Baba, Baba. Open your eyes. Look we are waiting here for you."

Later in the afternoon, at around 2:30 p.m. when I kept calling "Baba, Baba...O Baba..." He seemed to be breaking out of the stupor. There was slight movement of his hands. Both Debalina and I reached out our hands. He held his hands out and gripped back our hands."

When we askd him to open his eyes, Baba gradually opened his eyes. He was coming journeying back to us from his deep stupor.

"Treilokya Vijayasth Kavachasya Shiv Rishis..."

Baba asked about his grandson Shloke, "Where is Shloke?"

We were delighted to be able to talk with him. He asked for Ma, quizzing us, asking where she was. He said that he had just seen her, and was wondering where she went. He also shared that he thought Shloke was standing right by the door.

I called up home, spoke with Ma, spoke with Didibhai, Bhaikaku, Bhai, shared with them the news...this was we all prayed a first step in Baba's journey of his healing.

On his journey of returning to us...

Millie had again stopped by along with Malathi and Iccha...Iccha had informed Shaunak, Ambar, Lala...our CCA network in the US had been activated, and calls started pouring in.

When Millie came in, she touched him, and did her healing prayer, surrounding him with the light of healing.

Seow Ting and Julian had also shown up with a bouquet and CNM had sent in a beautiful bouquet with so many signed cards!!!!

Debalina and I were so relieved to see Baba coming back...

He continually kep asking for Ma, Munna, Piu, Shloke? Where were they? How was everything at home, he asked (referring to Dutta Bari, Kaushallya, Kharagpur, his only home)?

We talked all afternoon.

He wanted to talk to Ma.

We called her up and put her on the cellphone.

The excitement in his eyes was so apparent. He kept asking her why she was not here with him?

She told him that she is waiting for her visa to arrive.

My baba, baba so full of life, was returning to us....returning to fulfill all the karma with the underserved that he has to fulfill, to inspire, and to nurture us....


1 comment:

anando said...

it's always a journey, for you, for baba, for ma, etching subliminal memories and healing some uncharted scars, and yet, every step of the way is as timeless isnt it? so many of us have gone through and will, and learn. some of us will forgive our weaknesses, some will endure our love. please give him my love and regards. tell him i have such an indelible memory (which i visit often) too of another journey of another time, when i remember, sitting behind him, astride, heart pumping in anticipation, his shirt against my nose and face, wind in my hair, throbbing sputtering motorcycle under us, and we, clasped to each other sensing freedom breezing us by. those rides were life changing - please tell him that, he will know. love to you, stay safe and strong my friend