Wednesday, January 26, 2011

A divergent way of Celebrating Republic Day

After seeing the military might, valor and the exhibition of scientific and technological developments, diverse cultural ethos etc., of our great Nation on the long stretch of Rajpath for more than two hours, the immediate mood was to enjoy the holiday on Republic Day by a long slumber. But as Territorial Army soldier can never sit idle when the war is broken, the Palliative Care volunteer can hardly stop thinking about his family members, the great Palliative family especially when they are ailing and feeling emotional isolation. Few telephone calls here and there and Samaritans including our ever young at heart Mr. O D Sharma Sir, the most committed veteran for social causes and ailing patients, reached well on time in Sir Soba Singh Dharamshala attached with Delhi State Cancer Institute to celebrate Indian Republic Day with the ailing cancer patients.
Mr. Nahid at the counter informed that few patients have already left for their homes due to holiday and the remaining were around 30 only. Few new patients, whom we have not met last time, were taken aback on seeing the DNipCare volunteers heading towards their beds with passion in hearts and broad smile on faces. “Amma, we are working in Delhi and came just to see you on our holiday. As you belong to far away Nainital your relatives may not be able to visit you frequently and so we are here as your relatives and friends”, the brief introduction by any one of us was enough to melt the ice. The stories of their physical and emotional pains started flowing along with the droplets of tears. A sigh of relief, a moment of contentment at being with, interacting with and holding the hand of us, that is DNipCare, as depicted on our emblem.

Small juice packets distributed by us might or might not have given the feeling of sweetness to the tongues of patients being fed through Rhyles tubes. But we surely felt sweetness in our heart, when the blind cancer patient recollected DNipCare volunteers and asked for Madhu, who interacted with him last time also; when the liver cancer patient who evaded us and asked to talk to his brother instead at the beginning melt down, copied ghazals of Pankaj Udhas to his mobile from us and was requesting us to continue coming and interacting with him; when we saw the relief felt by a patient on getting tender care from Ansil and Ajith when he was lying unattended alone in his room after a fall from bed. These were the very little things we could attempt in the name of celebrating Republic Day for these ailing cancer patients. Can it all be called care or Palliative Care? We do not know, but we try and hope to continue striving as far as we are able to stand on our two legs.

Our Samaritans for this mission were Narayanan Kutty, Raghavan, O.D. Sharma, Som Nathan, Ansil, Atul Pandey, Ajith Kumar, Antony Cyriac, Madhu, Shaikh Moideen and a lot many volunteers who truly wished us from the core of their hearts but could not be present there due to unavoidable circumstances.
k.v. hamza,
Gen. Secretary, DNipCare

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