When you think about infinity.Your time in this world is too short, just too short.
It is easier to forgive everyone everyday.
There I was in the morning, witnessing the dilemma of a lady, perhaps only a few years older than myself, facing a daunting task of taking care of her mother who had a stroke. The daunting task that she may need to face alone, because father is old too, and the rest of the siblings just watching. Her eyes teared up when she spoke about taking unpaid leave for the time being, to care for her mother.
She’s not the only one feeling that way.
I know many who have been in her position before.
On my way back I thought of her. That feeling of being alone, facing the responsibilities alone, while the rest stood watching without understanding the need to help. Such a familiar feeling, I felt like just going back to the ward to tell her, “congratulations”.
Yes, there are times when we feel hurt and say it out. But by saying it out, we take the blame for hurting others while actually we were the ones hurt at the first place.
But it is ok.
Take care of your parents anyway, even if no one in this world offered to help.
Forgive others anyway. Because this precious life is too short for grudges, for anger, for complexities.
Do you know that once you step foot in jannah, you will forget that you have ever sufferred anything at all in this world?
Should that not be a source of motivation for all of us to go on just a little bit more?
When you spend your days telling people that their parent have passed away, listening to their cries and wails, it is only natural for you to expect others to learn the same lessons.
But often they don’t, because they don’t know how those wails and cries sound like.
Talk about praying for ease.
It was still early in the evening, a patient just passed away, and another patient became short of breath suddenly.
I saw that she’s a young girl, was very restless and breathless. She needs intubation.
I was worried, and while the nurses pushed her to the acute cubicle, I wondered how I was going to tube a young, strong and agitated girl.
Right away, the anaesthetic doctor came into the ward, looking for her.
So the other doctor immediately helped me intubate the young girl, and soon after, patient was sent to the ICU.
That night I slept a solid 4 hours, despite having a rough start.
When I asked from Allah that morning, for ease of performing my job, I pictured that help would come when I really needed it.
So I really had my affairs settled easily. Even better for the patients.
Yes. Prayers are answered. Some immediately, but for some, you need to wait patiently. Like I said, what is a day in this life if we compare to infinity.
Have you ever trained yourself to become a person with positive attitude, good character, kinder person, and failed miserably everytime you face a bigger test? Would you give up?
Or would you keep on telling yourself the truth, and hope that one day you would embody the messages and you will become the kinder, nicer person who is very patient?
Every single whisper of “do your best”, every single reminder for yourself to not destroy your efforts, everytime you tell yourself to keep on trying, is worth doing. If you feel like you have failed, that your efforts are not going anywhere, remind yourself that you need to keep on trying. Because one day, the reminders will come before you make a mistake, they will come when you feel so down, they will come when you need them the most, and will make the most sense.
Ten years ago today, I started working as a doctor.
Ten years of service, the biggest lesson I learnt is, the greatest regret a person could feel in his life is because he was not good enough to his parents. Did not spend enough time, did not act kindly enough.
I learnt that, no matter how stressed I become while at work, it is often reduced when I listen and talk to the patients.
I learnt that we understand more about life when we understand death. We live life better when we embrace that death is surely a part of life.
I learnt that positive thinking attracts positive surrounding.
Ten years in service, I realize that no matter how advanced technology is, sometimes we need to rely on our instincts, an our patients’ instincts too.
I learnt that, if we really wanted to help, we could always find the way to help, even if it is not what we planned to do at the first place.
I understand that everyone has 24 hours, but you need to be wise to use it fully.
It is from the early years of service that I learnt, if we wanted to do something, there is no such excuse as ‘being post call’ or ‘too busy with work’. If doctors use that excuse all the time, the only things we see are patients in their beds, and our own beds. I learnt that we should go wherever we needed to go, whenever we needed to.
I learned that every specialty has its importance, and we should never look down on others. If we think we know more, then we should educate. If we think people look down on us, perhaps there really are things that we should learn about more.
I learnt that doctors are fighters because we see too much suffering with our own eyes. Even when others don’t appreciate it, even when people call us names, we still fight for them.
I learnt that anger consumes energy. Too much energy.
I learnt that humility and gentleness goes a long way, even when many fellow Asians don’t agree with being gentle, thinking “people won’t listen to gentle people”. Trust me, being humble, kind and gentle is the right thing to do. No matter what the outcome is, people will never be able to blame us for being just that.
And I’m still struggling.
I learnt that honesty is the best policy. An honest doctor, an honest nurse, and yes, an honest patient. If a patient lies to a doctor/nurse, he would bring detriment to his own health and people around him.
I learnt that there is no point doing something if you expect something in return from that person. Help someone because it is the right thing to do. But he will never be able to pay you back, because of his imperfections.
Ten years in service, in a field where science is supposed to top others, I believe in God even more than when I started off.
Yes, science could cure some infections, detect cancer early, open up blood vessels, make a blind person see again.
But like all else in this universe, science is limited. Science helps but is not the answer to all.
Science can’t help a daughter to feel at peace while she’s caring for her mother who has dementia.
Science can’t tell you why this four-year-old has to die because of cancer.
Science can’t tell an octogenarian to get up and walk after antibiotics have cured her pneumonia, because she refused to walk as none of her children visited her.
Science can’t tell why a mother of five did not survive the breast cancer but that single lady lives on intact.
Science could not tell which ‘20%’ is not going to be cured from cancer, and why.
Science won’t tell you why this life is imperfect.
Only Allah does. Allah tells us how to care for our parents, why some people don’t survive until age 20, that life is imperfect that everyone will go through some kind of suffering in this life. Allah tells us that different people could overcome different kinds of challenges, we need His help to do that. Allah told us about death so we could live this life as better, gentler, kinder, more generous, and contented people.