Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Medicowesome secret project: Life of a blind man

Passion: Photography and writing

It's so exciting when you finally get out of your daily routine work and return to your hometown for the festivities. Especially when the festival of colors (Holi) is coming up and you just can't wait to bash the colors on your friends and family. No one can scold you for being childish and crazy while playing with the beautiful shades of joy, love, peace and happiness.

It was one Saturday afternoon when I attended my classes and then left my college to reach Amritsar railway station en route Ludhiana. Unfortunately, the train was two hours late; so I decided to board on another train, the Amritsar - Bilaspur Chhattisgarh Express. I booked a window seat in the sleeper class, bought some snacks, a packet of chips and soft drinks, and got in. The train was to depart from the station at 4 pm.

When I got in, I noticed something unusual. A man was 
continuously staring on the opposite seat until I stepped near and asked why. He didn't quite look directly at me but he sensed where the voice came from. No answer came. When I stepped closer, I noticed his left eye was partially closed while the right one had whitish opacities. On asking further, he said he was blind due to an accident a year ago. His treatments had failed due to financial problems. The doctor had removed the cataracts of his left eye while the right eye remained opacified because of lack of treatment. He was prescribed some medications so that the condition doesn't get worse!

His name was Raghu, from Uttar Pradesh. He was travelling back home, so he had to change his route from Delhi to reach the place. On further enquiry, he told me about his life and work. Raghu works all day to build huge flyovers and highway roads along with his co-workers. He was travelling alone as his family had left a day before. One of his co-workers helped him reach the station and get seated in the train. Since Raghu was the only financial support for his family of four, he got training to do the work for one month from Institute for the blind in Amritsar. It was saddening to know about the dark phase he had gone through in his life and how he had managed to do such a difficult job just to earn some money and fill the stomach of his family!

I felt really bad for him at the moment. We both were travelling for one common reason - go home to meet friends and spend some fruitful time with family. But I was in the train to go home and play with different shades of colors with them, while he was visiting his hometown in UP just to take a break from his routine work and continue living a dark life, in spite of the festival celebrations around.

Raghu didn't know who am I and why was I asking such questions to him. He didn't even ask me about anything and continued talking about his life before the incident and how he used to laugh, enjoy and had fun with his friends here. He told me about his friends who left him after the incident. His best friends still support him today and help him in commuting from his home here to the place of work.

I could sense that he felt good after talking to me about his story. He smiled for a moment. I smiled back but he could not see it. The train departed the station and I came back to my seat.

This got me thinking about how insignificant our problems are when we compare to those who are visually impaired. We complain and get frustrated for the silliest of things - The weather, the food, exams and sometimes even the people who love us. I couldn't help but feel guilty for all the times I've taken life for granted.

That day, I also realized that I should lend an ear to people who are wanting to tell their story but have found no medium to do so. Sometimes, we all need to be there for them - that's it. Just be there for them, right? Until then, I will do my part. Will you?

8 comments:

  1. This is so true!
    Thanks for the message. Needed it right now!!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Great! We will also do our part from now.
    Today through your post we also came to know that everyone has problems like us,but the way we see them makes difference.
    Thanks for sharing your experience.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Glad to know that, Madhu. Its quite simple actually.. just listen to what they are saying and understand. This is very important when we take history from the patients. Everyone has their own story and problems!
      Thank you for your appreciation and your welcome :)

      Delete
  3. Excellent piece!
    We ought to remember our impact on other people's lives.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Ivan.. Yes, we should always try to make a positive impact in any way we can. :)

      Delete
  4. I like how there is a vivid contrast - You're going to celebrate the festival of colors (Holi) and you meet a person who can't see colors anymore...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yup! At this moment you realise the actual beauty of the amazing world you perceive and how narrow the dimensions of life would be if it were entirely without the spectrum of colors !!

      Delete

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