After I decided to take a plunge with it, there have been two things happening; one has always been at the core, running by my side saying that it is going to be done. Other ‘was’ the precautionary self-criticism that I had given hopes to someone and what if it didn’t happen the way I had planned. But midst all this, one thing stood out for me. I don’t know how but every such time the negative sentiment ebbed away so easily that I started treating ‘the other possible’ outcome just as an afterthought and it helped a lot when things looked completely derailed.
And now, it is done, finally. I can say I am content while writing these lines as Mrs. Mehta is going to be hospitalized on March 19 for her knee cap surgery. Yes, sometimes I feel bad about the delay (it should have been done some five months ago). I tried to rectify but the problems were circumstantial in nature.
First, Mr. Mehta, her husband, got seriously ill and was leading to chronic heart failure. A routine checkup at the National Heart Institute found out it and he was immediately admitted to the ICU ward. Now he is well and taking care of himself satisfactorily.
Second, around 60 per cent of the cost of Mrs. Mehta’s treatment is the cost of the knee-cap implant. We had requested the knee-cap maker, Stryker, an MNC, either to donate the implant or provide it at a ‘no profit’ cost figure. The communication moved smoothly initially and they were positive but after sometime, the flow of correspondence became too clogged. We would keep on waiting for a response from Stryker which had still not said ‘no’. But after dilly-dallying of some five months, we realized it was not going to materialize. I had to work quickly now to have the ends met.
Third, Mrs. Mehta’s application of financial help to the Delhi chief minister to meet a part of the cost requirement went missing mysteriously. We came to know about it after two months. After putting pressure, the routine enquiry to verify the application details was conducted again. The file took another two weeks to move to the Delhi Secretariat. And then suddenly, on one fine day, Mrs. Mehta received a letter based on her first application material that her request was forwarded to another newly formed entity entitled to look into such matters.
It took another month of meeting and plain-talking to the officials to convince them of the need. Anyhow, the issue has been finally resolved and though not the requested amount, the Delhi government is ready to give 80 per cent of that. Meanwhile, the court decision also came greatly facilitating the process.
During all this, there were moments when Mrs. Mehta looked losing confidence, a must for her to respond well to the treatment given her age (she is 76). I cannot say how could I convince her and me that we were still going to make it – that she would respond well to do the surgery and would be able to walk again – that the funds were going to be arranged soon.
Now that is finally done and she is going to have her treatment; she laughs and smiles freely and that makes me believe that she is going to walk again. As the collected amount is in surplus, I have been able to return some amount donated through cheques. The rest is with the Holy Family Hospital.
It is a collective effort. We all have won half the battle already. We will win it finally when she walks downstairs on her own to attend the ‘Sandhya Aarti’ of the temple in the premises of her old-age home.
Let’s pray for her to respond well to the treatment.