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Photo copyright Suresh Gundappa 2006

My daughter had a minor surgery last week. It was tonsillitis.

While taking her to surgery room she was really nervous. This is her first in hospital for any major medical issue. she was nervous & crying.

I told her this surgery is really minor one and she should’t be scared.

she looked into my eyes and said : “what will you do if I die?”

I was totally taken aback and was not prepared for it obviously, With mischievous smile I told her “I will follow her to heaven” and she laughed lightly and Immediately said “make sure you carry your credit cards, we can do some shopping!” and I nodded my head affirmatively (smiling!)

Immediately air was light and humour was on but she wanted to tell me couple of things as if this is her last opportunity.

Her hand was still in my hands, I said you should avoid thinking negatively and a good doctor is operating on her so she should’t be thinking about death. she said – ” she is not thinking about death anymore but she is remembering some of her best moments. it was my turn to get curious and ask her to tell me more about it.

she said” she was remembering all the photography tours she accompanied me , she was thinking about the gifts I gave her for her birthday. She said we should go again on a mountain trip”

I said “sure we are going to mountains as soon as you get OK”.

But to me most heartening moment was that I had given her lot of cherished moments. She had more than one moment to to cherish in times of fear of death.

I wondered what would I think as my last moment If I am going to die next moment. I could’t think more as I was too much focused on my her.

I was totally overwhelmed by the conversation. General anesthesia injection given to her was already showing its effect but she did’t want to let my hand go. I kissed on her forehead and said Happy surgery!

Surgery went well for nearly one and half hour and then she was placed Intensive care unit for one hour! everything was really smooth and glitch free.

She woke up after three hours and few hours later she said “You are a liar Daddy, You said you will chase me to heaven and you are still in hospital” and I said ” Sorry Sweetie my flight just got delayed” we both laughed hard.

Suddenly death made our life better. Suddenly thought of death bought us together even more.

But what was important to me is that I had given my daughter some of her best moments in life. I had no regrets!

What would you remember if you are going to die next moment?

Merry Christmas!

Have a nice time with your loved ones!

Love and lots of it dear ones

Suresh

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