यह एक अलग तरह का आलेख है. मनीष गुप्ता जो एक बैंकिंग प्रोफेशनल हैं तथा साथ ही अंग्रेज़ी भाषा पर भी महत्वपूर्ण काम कर रहे हैं, एक ऐसे दौर से निकल कर आए हैं जिसे "ज़िंदगी और मौत के बीच झूलने" की संज्ञा भी दी जा सकती है. ज़ाहिर है इस तरह के अनुभव से गुज़रना किसी हादसे से कम नहीं होता है, और इसलिए अक्सर ऐसी परिस्थितियों में मज़बूत से मज़बूत आदमी भी टूट जाता है, हताश हो जाता है और ज़िंदगी में धुंधलके के अलावा कुछ दिखाई नहीं पड़ता. सारे रंग 'धूसर' रंग में तब्दील हो जाते हैं. मनीष, जैसा कि इस आलेख से उजागर होता है, इसके अपवाद रहे हैं: आशावादिता से एकदम सराबोर और ज़िंदगी के प्रति पूरी तरह से कृतज्ञ. मनीष से मेरा परिचय उनकी मां की मार्फ़त हुआ है, मैंने उन्हें देखा नहीं है अभी तक. उनकी मां, विजय गुप्ता एक महाविद्यालय से सेवानिवृत्त प्राचार्य हैं और यहीं हमारे समुदाय-परिसर में रहती हैं, और एक ही पेशे से जुड़ी होने के कारण हमारी ख़ास मित्र भी हैं. मनीष नौजवान हैं, और इस सबके बावजूद उत्साह से भरे हुए हैं. यह आलेख वास्तविक जीवन से ली गई 'प्रेरक कथा' के रूप में भी पढ़ा जा सकता है. मुझे यक़ीन है कि यह न केवल रोचक, बल्कि उपयोगी भी लगेगा. कष्ट से गुजरने वाले लोग ऐसे लोगों की तरफ बहुत उम्मीद से देखते हैं जो हंसते-खेलते "घाटियां पार कर आए हैं" और इस तरह उनके लिए 'रोल-मॉडल' की भूमिका अदा करते हैं.
I never wallowed in this thought. I have seen several genuinely nice people suffer much more and my illness looked insignificant in comparison. Their stories of handling grief and getting life back to normal gave me tremendous strength and courage to face my little situation positively and with a smile. Your prayers and good wishes strengthened me and my family and I remain forever indebted to you.
Now, I have recovered and rejoined office and look forward to working again with passion (I know of no other way) and having fun along the way. As 2011, the most challenging and hence, most memorable year of my life draws to a close, I am tempted to share a few of the lessons that I either learned new or where I reinforced my old beliefs (you know that I had a lot of time to reflect so there are many more, but some other time).
1. Never give up:
There was a time in May 2011 when I had become so weak that I could not even get up from the bed. Food didn’t taste good at all and body didn’t completely accept whatever little I managed to swallow. There was either no news or if it was, it was bad news. Three of our relatives had come forward to volunteer for organ donation, but each one had either been diabetic or hypertensive for some time, rendering their organs unsuitable for transplantation. I was terribly missing my dad who was the only O+ (my blood group) person in the immediate family and had passed away in Jan 2009. One day, in an emotional moment, I complained to god why he took away my dad when his son needed him the most. This somehow gave a new resolve and strength to the family, as if dad had somehow made some arrangements for me and all we had to do was to find them out.
We had already registered ourselves for cadaveric transplant and could do little more on that front. However, given there is no national repository for swaps, my family started meeting more and more nephrologists to get our names registered in their databases. Within a couple of weeks, three offers came our way and the initial assessment for suitability commenced. Out of the blue, a friend called, heard about my condition and stepped forward to offer his organ to me. I was shocked. Weeks before, I thought we have reached a dead end, but suddenly several doors had opened. I came to the conclusion that one can always ask parents for help, even if they are not alive, and they never fail to respond. All that they ask from us is to continue our efforts and not give up and resign to the fate. This believe was further strengthened when right after my surgery, both the cadaveric and the swap calls matured, and those organs helped to cure other patients in the queue.
2. Have sincerity and depth in relations:
Have genuine relations. Invest time in nurturing them and cherish them as they mature. Take care of them when they are sick and/or old. I didn’t need to ask my wife, mother, or sister if they shall volunteer under a swap program…I rightfully assumed it. My mom-in-law underwent the same test three times as she was simply not willing to believe that based on the first test results and her age, the doctor had suggested we keep her as a reserve and not as the first option. Here again, if the reports had turned out to be normal, I would not have had to ask.
3. Try and avoid lifestyle related diseases:
Type 2 diabetes and hypertension are partly related to our lifestyles. Too much junk food and too little exercise. Try and avoid them. Wonder, if someone very dear to you (your child, your spouse, your parents, your sister or brother, or your dearest friend) needs you to save their life, and you simply cannot, all because you destroyed your own organs due to….too much junk food and too little exercise!
4. Pledge to donate your organs after you are gone:
I didn’t know that one person can save as many as 9-10 lives even after his or her death. Two eyes go to restore vision in two blind people, Two kidneys get transplanted in two patients suffering from kidney failure, One liver is split into two (as it is the only internal organ that can re-grow) and save lives of two patients of liver failure. One heart saves a life, so can one pancreas, not to mention skin, that can heal several burn victims. In the year 2011, Mumbai had only 8 cadaver kidney transplants, when it could potentially have had thousands, forcing the balance to continue the financially and physically debilitating option of dialysis. Of the 37 million people across the globe who are blind, over 15 million (40%) are India. Over 3.5 million of these in India suffer from corneal blindness and simply cannot enjoy the beauty of this earth, and either don’t work or work well below their true potential, simply because we either burn or bury the corneas that could illuminate their lives.
On this note and on the eve of New Year, I WISH YOU ENOUGH!
I wish you enough sun to keep your attitude bright no matter how grey the day may appear.
I wish you enough rain to appreciate the sun even more.
I wish you enough happiness to keep your spirit alive and everlasting.
I wish you enough pain so that even the smallest of joys in life may appear bigger.
I wish you enough gain to satisfy your needs, and…
I wish you enough loss to appreciate all that you possess.
regards and god bless!