Oct 27, 2009

An Agony amidst Heaven - II

It was pitch dark and Yang Fula with total blackout, looked like a war prone city. At this moment, I recalled the incident from the legend of Krishna. When Krishna was asked to open his mouth to check whether he really ate soil, Yashoda was astonished to see the entire universe in it. My case was similar. The only difference was that my universe only showed a Black Hole!!

The doctors were in the middle of this super marvelous surgery and I wondered what worse could happen if a torch was not arranged soon. Fortunately, a torch was brought and the surgery commenced once again. Like I said earlier, the tooth required some other means so that it could be extracted. Instead of plucking it out, the tooth now had to be cut from the bone. This was the time for the introduction of the most “sensational” equipment of its time – A mechanical bone cutting instrument that was operated by paddles!!

This is the closest comparison that I could make to briefly describe the operation of that machine. Yes, a sewing machine that had quite similar operating principle. It required the hand and the legs to be in perfect sync to properly cut the bone. No wonder, an army personnel was handling it.

Yang Fula was so remote that I wondered that the Bhutan government ever spent a penny on its development. And when we talk about development, the bare necessities are primary concern. A healthy dental life was considered as luxury rather than necessity. So spending on modernization of dental equipment (of Yang Fula) would have found place only in their 150th Five year plan (if they ever had such thing in Bhutan). Nevertheless, this was all that they had and I was assured that its success rate was quite high*. (The reason for this asterisk sign is that they did not mention any thing about its success rate in total darkness!!). It had been 33 years since man landed on moon and I was at a place where bone was still being cut through a mechanical process. This was the time when my love for this place had turned bitter.

A hand right in front of my mouth holding the torch, another one inside it, equipped with a tool and the third one to spray saline water on the tooth to facilitate the cutting. It appeared that some kind of treasure hunt was on inside my mouth. It made me more impatient and this time I felt like peeping inside my own mouth. I could not hold my same stern facial expression any more as my eyes looked more tired this time. Every surgery has one integral part in it which every patient dreads and that’s blood. The pain had increased drastically and the surgery had now left me bleeding. At this time I suddenly slipped into a semiconscious state (syncope). For a while, I could see nothing and was totally blacked out. It was a state of worry for the doctors, especially my husband. With innumerous surgeries, it was almost a routine for him. Only this time it was the most difficult one for him as the patient was none other than me. As I was falling unconscious, I could no longer hold the jaws tight and my mouth started closing. I barely recall that my name was being called again and again to make me stay awake. Finally when nothing worked, water was sprinkled on my face. This is all I remember thereafter the surgery.

The 3 and a half hour surgery (or the suffering) finally ended and the doctors breathed their most awaited sigh of relief. Unfortunately this was not same for me. The surgery had left me with the most excruciating pain in my life. Nothing worked for me, even the thought that I was a “brave” army wife. At times I even wanted that the nerves connecting my gums and the brain may rupture so that the pain in it would be released. I could only sit helplessly and let the painful moments pass away hoping that at some instant I’ll be relieved from it. Those were the moments that now fell short of words and unlike Sudarshan Kriya, its not something that you would want to experience it to know it.

Although the legendry surgery was over and I was on medication, there were some more bad karmas that were yet to be encashed. After five days of surgery, the tooth had developed an infection which could only be treated in a hospital under proper observation. Around 30 kms from Yang Fula, there was a civil hospital where I had to be hospitalized for few days. Here I was administered a few more antibiotics to cure the infection. By this time, I had lost all the hopes for something good to happen. And to my surprise, the infection was duly cured and I recovered within a month. While I was being treated in the hospital my two little kids were nurtured by my husband. The dentist from the army now had an additional responsibility of taking care of his kids, entirely. Like the sweetest dad, he would prepare food, do the dishes and make them ready for the school. This was the softer side of him that I got to see…at a cost of and an extravagant pain!

Nevertheless, this pain did not let me forget the beauty of Bhutan which still remains the best memory of my life. Amidst this chaotic life of Mumbai, I wish I could just runaway in the same meadows and wilderness and again relive those pleasant times.

Lt. Col. Suresh Isawe and Mrs. Jyoti Isawe

Isawe family with Rohan and Shivangi.

This story came out while Vasudha was being treated here and was crying for pain. I was a little happy to see her as it reminded me of this great ordeal ;) I thought this will acquaint her with the 4 letter word ‘PAIN’ which she thought she was the only one to experience!!

- As narrated to Vasudi by Mrs. Jyoti Isawe (Shivangi’s mom, the patient!) and complied using the inputs from both of them.

PS: Few of the analogies and experiences are fictional but bare a lot of resemblance to the actual story. I hope you enjoyed. Do post a comment!!

Oct 24, 2009

An Agony amidst Heaven - I

It was the summer of 1993 when we were far away from the chaos of the world. We were amidst the most beautiful place on this planet where the mountains were covered with greenery and patches of land were often grazed by the cattle. Untouched by civilization, unfazed by the people and unconquered by the humans. The beauty of this place was so enchanting that if God were to come on earth, it would only be this place where he would stay. The place was fondly called as the “Land of the Thunder Dragon”; today we know it as “Bhutan”.

The only reason I was here was my husband who was posted as a Major of the Indian Army. The place that served as the Indian Army base was known as “Yang Fula”. This was the adobe of my small little family and (as I always believed) of that of God as well. Although the tanks on routine patrols and the mass drill of the soldiers were a customary sight, the sounds of birds chirping on tree tops and the leaves swaying by the wind would often leave us mesmerized. The market was far away from our house and like a nomad, I had to travel, in fact walk a few kilometers to buy the bare necessities. Nonetheless, I enjoyed few of the best days of my life at this place.

(Our sweet home in Yang Fula)

All this while, I was more than happy to be at this place. Although deprived from the advancement of technology, it never took away my comfort. The fact that this place was untouched by science and its preachers made this none less than heaven. Added to those sweet, pleasant and cherished memories, is an experience that I still strive to forget. An incident that made me realize the importance of a developed state, that made me curse my very existence in this underdeveloped country.
It was one of those moments when the ordeal was so much that I thought I could give away everything; even my life if that could pacify the pain. The pain developed in one of my tooth was dutifully amplified by my husband – a dentist to whom first I had surrendered my life and then my tooth!!

My husband had earned a lot of fame and recognition in the rural native as he was the only serving dentist for the locality. At a place where the staple diet of people consisted of dried beetle nut (“Duma”) and dried yak’s milk (“Chhurbi”), almost every person had stained and spoiled teeth. The locals were grateful to him as he had been their only pain reliever. Little did I know that the pain reliever of the neighborhood would be the cause of my agony?

Indian Army was his practice area and my mouth was his battleground. It started with negotiations with the tooth by administering a few antibiotics. The medication failed to do any good and finally the battle lines had to be drawn. The mission was elimination of tooth from my own territory. In spite of his expertise in dentistry, I was extremely skeptic about the surgery. With much reluctance, I got myself mentally ready to be operated on. The operation required a recce of the tooth and its orientation in the bone which was possible only through an X-ray. At a place that was yet to see its first full fledged hospital, getting a proper X-ray was an intricate task. Nevertheless, my husband managed a primitive X-ray done for my tooth.

With all the information that the X-ray could provide, my husband started the operation with two of his assistants. I lay on a reasonably comfortable chair (unlike the modern one) with mouth wide open and in total acceptance of the situation. I was administered anesthesia for a “painless” removal of the tooth. All the usual procedures were at its place and everything looked quite okay at the commencement of the operation. After a while, I noticed the change in body language of all the three. I could smell something fishy, as if something was not happening in the way it should have. He would glance at the X-ray for once and in the other moment, in my mouth. This continued for sometime, as if he was ensuring whether the X-ray was that of a proper tooth. Until then, I had only heard stories of people being victim of faulty X-ray scan which would lead to the removal of a healthy tooth rather than an unwanted one. It was always followed by a burst of laughter and empathy on the sorry state of the patient. Only this time, I was the sorry figure and someone else would have had the last laugh. I was praying relentlessly that this should not be the case. It was a very comical situation where a storm of thoughts and questions rose in my mind, my mouth was too open to ask anything. Only expressions that I could give, was a frowning forehead, a raised eyebrow and the eyes popping out with the eyeballs moving from one end to other, staring (rather scaring) the three of them. It was like a “Helloo!! Whats going on??” kind of look. Thankfully, the X-ray was proper. But the tooth was adamantly stuck in the bone. The X-ray was a primitive one which showed only the lateral view of the tooth and its actual orientation in the bone was still a mystery. What else can you expect from an “untouched”, “unfazed” raw beauty of a remote location in Bhutan? This was the time when my love for this place suddenly turned sour.

The tooth was now at an intermediate stage. It was not completely out and it seemed that the tooth would remain stuck half way if something else was not tried. Just when something else was about to be tried, mother nature had its fury casted further more on me and the power went off!

What happened next?? I bet you cannot guess. Wait for the next post and expect the unexpected!!

Oct 20, 2009

Me and my 1/4th wisdom...

It was one of those moments of my life when I was remembering all the knowledge points taught in an art of living course more than ever before. Hoping something shall help me somehow….

I was stuck in a comfortable reclining chair “accepting the situation as it was” while the colonel was at his Routine War. Only this time the war ground was inside my mouth,the weapons were his tools and injections and the enemy was my innocent wisdom tooth. As he struggled to take away one fourth of my wisdom (You see to pour more in the cup it has to be emptied first, especially when its over flowing☺ like in my case) which was determined not to leave me at any cost ( of course because of its unbounded love for me) .I was chanting in my heart “opposite values are complimentary” (Waiting for the opposite to manifest soooooon). Every second felt like a decade and nothing seemed to be working. Though I was deep breathing, the breath was not doing its job of relaxing the body or the mind!

Oh! I realized now, I have again underestimated this surgery, just like I did when I went through labor pains . Only these 2 times in my life I actually doubted that I was brave, but now it was too late. Even though I wanted I could not RUN AWAY from that chair.

So I surrendered. Guruji’s pic stared into my eyes with his usual smile. For the 1st time I felt irritated with his smile .I am in excruciating pain and You are smiling ? You better intervene and take away this pain I ordered to him.
This moment I felt another prick in my mouth and a tingling sensation as if a thousand ants were crawling on my cheek. The colonel gave a final blow to its enemy and finally the wisdom left me.
After the dressing, usual instructions followed. But one instruction was not usual and interesting. Eat lots of ice creams tonight. Wow! Now I can eat ice creamS and not feel guilty. Guilty because, I am off white sugar.

The ice creams also lost there charms and I returned to the doc after 2 days complaining of pain .He with a lot of sympathy tells me "oh generally the patients recover the very next day and come back smiling ,unlike you".
These words did not help me at all and the same feeling came back to me ! The same feeling I got, when I came out of the examination hall thinking it was over wow! Just until my class topper came out and offered to discuss the answers. Oh no! I realized so many mistakes , she cant be wrong and I am surely not right. There was a hollow choking feeling. Have you ever gone through this feeling?

Present moment is inevitable, as I was just about accepting this fact , the colonel’s wife who was silently observing everything says “ Oh I am so happy to see you like this”. What!!! did I hear that right , I stared at her in shock. She continued, “This reminds me of my misery of wisdom tooth extraction” What misery ,I was definitely interested in hearing as I was waiting for some relief.

I could hardly breathe or blink while hearing her story. Oh my God! No ways! What! Couldn’t be!! Etc etc was my reaction to her story. I could feel exactly what she may have gone though and a sense of relief was dawning over me. I was feeling grateful for my state and happy to be 25 years ahead in time where I got much superior treatment than her.

Her story will be the next post. You cant miss it. Its really really really interesting.:)

In the meanwhile I have dropped the idea of any tooth removals for now until the old memories fade away completely. But I keep up my faith I am really Brave☺ isn’t it???

Oct 16, 2009

Happy Diwali !!!

Diwali the festival of lights !!! Ahaa !! What an amazing day .. lights, sweets, celebration.

The celebration is not confined to yourself or only your family spread the amazing smile to the whole world . Many souls to be awakened and many more benchmarks to be set . May this coming year add up onto spirituality, health and wealth. On this amazing eve of Diwali lets hear from Guruji himself about the Festival of Lights !! and its significance !!!

Cheers To one and all !!!

Jai Gurudeva !!!

Oct 5, 2009

Quiz Time!! A Logic Problem!



Warning: The process of solving this problem might lead to extreme frustration!
Assurance: The problem is solvable :)

1.There are 5 houses in 5 different colours. In each house lives a person with a different nationality.

2.The 5 owners drink a certain type of beverage, smoke a certain brand of cigar, and keep a certain pet.

3.No owners have the same pet, smoke the same brand of cigar or dink the same beverage.



The Brit lives in the red house.
The Swede keeps dogs as pets.
The Dane drinks tea.
The green house in on the left of the white house.
The green house’s owner drinks coffee.
The person who smokes Pall Mall rears birds.
The owner of the yellow house smokes Dunhill.
The man living in the centre house drinks milk.
The Norwegian lives in the first house.
The man who smokes Blends lives next to the one who keeps cats.
The man who keeps the horse lives next to the man who smokes Dunhill.
The man owner who smokes Bluemasters drinks beer.
The German smokes Prince.
The Norwegian lives next to the blue house.
The man who smokes Blends has a neighbour who drinks water.

Einstein wrote this riddle. He said 98% of the world could not solve it.
But it can be done. I took 15 minutes to solve this and that's not great performance. I am sure you can do it in less time (will depend on whether you have done your sadhna today :)

Best of Luck,

Hurry back with your answers.
An exciting prize awaits you!

Jai Gurudev

PS: Needless to say, from YES!+ volunteers, I expect some honesty! So please solve this yourself!!!! If somehow you have solved this before and know the answer, please be a sport and let some other deserving candidate win! :)

Oct 3, 2009

Himmat Karne Waalo Ki Haar Nahi Hoti ~!

Sharing something which has always inspired me in my life! A beautiful poem written by Harivanshrai Bacchan.


Himmat karne waalon ki haar nahi hoti,
Lehron se darkar nauka paar nahi hoti|

Nanhi cheeti jab daana lekar chalti hain,
Chadti deewaron par sau baar phisalti hain,
Man ka vishwas ragon mein sahas bharta hain,
Chadkar girna, Girkar chadna, na akharta hain

Aakhir uski mehnat bekar nahi hoti,
Koshish karne waalon ki haar nahi hoti||

Dubkiyan sindhu mein gotakhor lagata hain,
Ja-Ja kar khaali haath hee laut aata hain,
Milte na sahaj hee moti paani mein,
Behta doona utsah issi hairani mein,

Muthi uski khaali har baar nahi hoti,
Himmat karne waalo ki haar nahi hoti||

Asafalta ek chunauti hain, sweekar karo,
Kya kami reh gayi, dekho aur sudhar karo,
Jab tak na safal ho, neend chain ko tyago tum,
Sangharsho ka maidan chod, mat bhaago tum,

Kuch kiye bina hi jai-jai kaar nahi hoti,
Himmat karne waalo ki haar nahi hoti||

Jai Gurudev


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