By: Naima Baghozi

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In the meantime Sahira’s parents were seated in front of the doctor’s table facing him with worried looks on their faces. The doctor looked back at them with solemn look on his face which made the parents worry even more.

Sahira’s father was the first one to ask:
“Doctor, what is wrong with our daughter? Why are you looking like that? You have really got us worried even more now.”
The doctor looked at them silently at first and then started to explain slowly to them, “Well, I wish I had good news to give you but unfortunately it’s not so as per the results of the x-rays…”he paused a bit and Sahira’s mother pleaded,
“Please doctor, don’t keep us hanging anymore – I, for one can’t stand this suspense anymore.”

So the doctor took out the x-rays and placed them on the lighted board and started demonstrating to them while explaining,
“You see, this is Sahira’s spinal cord and right here at the bottom you can see the damage that was caused by the accident – can you see?”
The parents could but only nod their heads upon seeing this as they were too emotional to say anything.
“So because of this damage, Sahira is not going to be able to walk…”
At this point the mother would have literally fallen down, had it not been for her husband’s support. The doctor rushed to help her back to the seat and placed a glass of water in her hand for she had turned quite pale. Sahira’s dad said to her,
“Drink the water in small sips and try to calm down so we can come to terms with this situation,” and then he turned to face the doctor once again and asked him,
“So doctor, do you mean to tell us that our daughter is not going to walk again? She is ever going to be crippled?”
The doctor replied,
“It is not a complete hopeless case, we first need to treat all her cuts, bruises and not forgetting the broken ribs. With her condition, we need to take one step at a time. After we have cured all this then we can start with the situation of her legs and the treatment of her spinal cord. She will also definitely need physiotherapy which luckily we can provide right here at our hospital.”
The parents almost spoke simultaneously with great excitement,
“You mean our daughter will be able to walk again doctor?”
“Well, we have to be optimistic and a lot depends on Sahira herself,” the doctor said.
“What do you mean?” asked the mother.

“First and foremost, while we are curing the wounds, I will have a specialist analyze her for she does not seem to remember a thing about the accident. The fastest she comes to terms with the situation, the better it will be for her. For the clearer her mind is , the better for her for she will have the will to move again.”
The doctor kept quiet for a moment and continued,
“With the physiotherapy and exercises, we will be able to anticipate on the major operation which we will have to do in order for her to walk again God willing.”
The parents looked at each other with hope in their eyes but then…
“An operation?” in a chorus they asked – like they just realized what the doctor had said, for all their ears could hear was that their daughter could walk again.
The doctor said, “Yes, in her case it is very necessary to have an operation if she is to walk again.”
“But is that operation guaranteed for Sahira to walk again?” the father asked.
“There are never hundred percent guarantees in any operations even if it is a minor operation. However, we do what we know is the best way and the rest we leave it to God.”
“Doctor, what do we need to do?” sounding quite desperate.
“Don’t worry too much, Sahira doesn’t need to see either one of you or even her brother looking desperate or worried or even with long faces. You have to try your best to cheer her up,” the doctor calmed him down.

The parents nodded again in acceptance.
“You have to make sure she is as comfortable as you can and she should also eat well. Positivity is a very important aspect around her and she shouldn’t be sad, okay?” the doctor continued to say.
“Okay doctor. We will make sure we follow your instructions as best as we can.”
“Very good then, don’t forget all this is going to be quite a change to her and you all too – even if for a little while.”
“We understand doctor,” the father said.
“Okay, now here is the most important question, who will give her the news? Me or you?” the doctor asked.
The parents were lost for words for a moment then…
“It’s better if we are the ones to tell her,” replied the father.
“Very well, but if you will need any assistance, I will be right here in my office. Ah! Before I forget, she also has to remain here for at least one week to ten days for treatment and observation,” the doctor said.
“We understand doctor and thank you for your advice,” the mother said.

Back in Sahira’s hospital room, she still looked very sad and in deep thoughts….
Dasi called out to her, “Sahira, Sahira…” she seemed to come from quite afar, “Yes, what is it Dasi?” he asked her “What is it? What are you thinking about?”

She replied, “ My mind is still on the poor driver- I am thinking of his family too. What must they be going through now? I just can’t help but think I am the cause of his death for if I hadn’t been stupid enough to stand right in the middle of the road then all this would have been avoidable…”

Dasi looked at his sister with such a disbelief look on his face and then admonished his sister.
“Sahira, will you stop all this nonsense…whether you like it or not, you just have to stop this belief that you are responsible for this man’s death,” he paused a bit then continued, “you mean to tell me that with the kind of speed that man had he wouldn’t have hit another person or something else and end up dying anyway? So, stop kidding yourself here and thinking you are the culprit of this accident…” he ended up with a sigh.

Sahira just decided to look at his brother in complete silence. Thus, when their parents entered the room, they found their two children in tensed silence. Dasi stood up immediately and started shooting questions at his parents.

“Dad, mum, what did the doctor have to say about Sahira’s situation? Will she be alright? Will she be able to walk again? …”
His dad cut him short, “Whoa Dasi, will you calm down a bit and give us a chance of explaining to your sister and you of course of what’s going to happen from now onwards? …”

For the first time since her parents entered the room, Sahira opened her mouth and spoke, “What is going to happen, dad?”

Both the parents came nearer to their daughter and with such compassion on their faces; they calmly related to her what the doctor told them from the beginning to the end. All this time, Sahira’s face was showing different expressions, from horror to dismay, agitation and even from hope to hopelessness. Finally, tears were quietly rolling down her cheeks and she said to her parents in such a flat tone which tore her parent’s hearts.

“I did not realise this nightmare would actually turn into a real life changer for me…” she then slowly closed her eyes and remained silent.
Dasi stood in silence but in quite a shock and wondered what he could do best to help his beloved sister. He knew he had to do something worthwhile in order to help her get through these very difficult days ahead…not only for Sahira but for the entire family.

Really, in a matter of speaking, these difficult days ahead of them will affect each and every one of them one way or another. Their lives will certainly change, their lifestyle from now onward will revolve around Sahira- for the betterment of her well being.

Sahira had no choice but to accept the situation as calmly as possible for she knew right at the bottom of her heart that this is the only solution to her recovery and to her mobility again. So she slowly opened her eyes again and looked at her parents and brother and told them, “I know this is very difficult for you all and probably more to you than to me for you cannot bear seeing me like this…but I accept my situation and I am ready to undergo all treatments just so I can see those beautiful smiles return to your faces. I have faith in God and I feel with his grace everything will be fine.”

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The treatment started with immediate effect and the psychiatrist was brought in too so he could establish the blockage of the accident scene in Sahira’s memory.
Day in, day out, visitors were pouring in the hospital to visit Sahira, from family to friends, to neighbours. On top of that were the many flowers she was getting, one would think it was a princess’s room. At least, this cheered her u and made her take her treatment positively and thus, making her recover even faster. The physiotherapist was happy with her progress and the best came when in the middle of the week, the psychiatrist and she had a breakthrough. Sahira held on to her head and screamed while tears were rolling down her cheeks.

“Doctor, doctor, I can remember…I can remember everything…from beginning to the moment I was hit.” She ended with real heavy sobs and the doctor calmed her down. He let her take it all out for he knew it was for the best. The doctor then sent one of the nurses to call her doctor, who came running.
“Is it true what I heard from the nurse? Sahira has finally recalled what happened to her?” he asked his fellow doctor with real excitement. His colleague was all smiles as he replied,
“Yes doctor, she has finally recalled all that happened but she has a bad headache. I think we should give her some painkillers and let her rest for a while before we continue with anything else, don’t you agree?”
“Yes of course. I completely agree with you.” The nurse was then instructed to do just that. The doctor then left for his office to call and talk to her parents of the latest development. This news made the parents and Dasi overjoyed and thanked God for this wonderful progress.

In the mean time Sahira’s dad and Dasi were busy building a rump for Sahira next to their little staircase so when she comes home from hospital, there won’t be any discomfiture for her in her wheel chair. This way she could wheel herself in and out without difficulty. Her mother was busy arranging her bedroom to make it as comfortable as possible for her. They did not want their daughter to feel useless in anyway and of course they were hoping it will be a temporary situation for them. The accident had really become a life changer, not only to Sahira but to them all as a family and however temporary it may be they have to adapt to it.

Therefore for the time being, they had to clear a number of their furniture and make everything accessible for her when she gets home. Getting home had seemed a far off thing at first but with the full memory recovery of Sahira, the doctor decided it would be best to allow her to go home for he figured with familiar surroundings she would have an even better chance for a quicker recovery.

The following morning, when the family came to visit, the doctor called the parents to his office whilst Dasi went to his sister’s room.
“Please sit down I need to speak with you…”
“Is everything okay doctor?” Dasi’s father asked.
“Ah, yes. Don’t worry. As I told you on the phone yesterday about the return of your daughter’s memory, I am very pleased with the situation and have decided it best to allow her to go home and be in familiar surroundings and faces. With this, she may have a chance of a better and a much quicker recovery.”
“Really doctor? When can we take her home, today?”
“Calm down, calm down…I can only allow her to go tomorrow morning. We have to prepare her properly and counsel her knowing that now her life is a bit changed. Going home in a wheel chair is not the same as on her two legs, am I right?” the doctor said, laughing.
“Of course doctor,” both parents replied.
“So I will give you some medicines for her and you will have to bring her twice a week for her physiotherapy until when we can determine as to the right time to perform the operation.”
“Very well doctor, we understand. Can we now go and see her?”
“Yes of course,” the doctor replied with a smile…

Await for the last piece of Sahira’s story soon…how will be the end of her story?? Stay tuned 😉

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