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This Bhopali blogger met with an accident and this post of hers made me remember my own tryst with life (or should I call it death?) about 8 years ago. I was in class XI, probably the best of my school years; life had been benevolent and I was riding on waves of success in school's responsibility chart. That eventful day [September 30th, 1997] I was waiting after school hours to meet the principal concerning the upcoming teacher's day. By the time this meeting ended, the whole school was empty and I was the last one to leave. I started my Kinetic Honda, moved out and just 100 meters outside the campus as I turned left onto the main road ..........

I myself don't remember anything after I took that turn - nature has programmed this feature of memory loss into us to protect us from the psychological trauma of remembering such morose points in life.

Anyway continuing the tale (now based on my friends' narration to me). Another kid of class 6th from my school was biking home on that road. He was on my left and had to turn right - so kid as he was, he suddenly tuned right and came right in front of my Kinetic. I (probably) tried to break, and swerve my vehicle out of his way when it went out of control (also due to sand that was spread along the road) and Skid!! I probably skid along with my Kinectic for about 6-10 Ft and went into semi-conscious state. All I remember are voices and some disjoint pictures - Shailesh with me in his lap in an Auto-rickshaw, Anshu's worried face sitting beside me on a bed, my parents along with me in an Ambulance, and then a whole night of drifting into semi-consciousness.

Well, the accident wasn't major so to say (just a skid!); I had some physical injuries - some bruises on my leg, on my face and shoulder (the marks remain till date though) BUT the major injury was on the head - the fall and skid left my brain shaken (literally!), and there was a blood clot in my head.
The effects of the head injury were pretty distressing for me. I had to learn to walk again (at an age of 17). I found it difficult to balance and initially I would drift obliquely along the path. When I had finally learnt to walk I found that images in front of my eyes vibrated while walking - this was when I realized how much automatic balancing of imagery is done by our eyes when we walk - they automatically move in the opposite direction so that the picture on our retina stays still. While all this was more of psychological - the physical trauma was the severe headaches I had for about a month after the accident. Loud music, or running or even brisk walking gave me such headaches. I could not read for a long duration and was forbidden from reading after dark (under a fluorescent lamp of course) for a month. And one anomaly that I still carry (incurable) is that I cannot hear some frequencies of sound with my right ear.

Well whatever! It was another incident in my life that left a deep imprint on me. Fortunately for me, the scooter on which two of my friends - Anshu and Shailesh - were going home broke down just a few meters away from the place where I met the accident. God had his own way of helping me!! They both were the angels for me that day.
And then the crowd of friends who rushed to the hospital on hearing about my accident.... even as I write this, shivers run through my body thinking about how much people cared for me. They were all there, by the same evening - all knew they wouldn't be allowed to meet me as I was in the ICU. But it mattered for them to be there - friends who were not in regular touch (don't know how the news spread so fast to them), classmates and relatives - everyone was there. Two of my teachers came to see me in the ICU. My Mama who was extremely busy those days rushed to see me the very next day.
When I was shifted to the normal ward (and later a private ward) I used to have a bunch of atleast 5 friends every evening; some of them came to see me almost every alternate day. In those 15 days I realized how much my life mattered to people far and near and how valuable life is!! I have since developed my own philosophy of life -
"Life is like a public limited company where you are the CEO, your parents, close friends and relatives are the Board of Directors. Other people with whom you interact are small investors. The rest of the world is your customer. Your reponsibility is towards one and all of them - you are merely the trustee of their wealth."


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