Saturday, December 30, 2006

6 months down the road.

It’s now 12 at night and Anne and Koby have fallen asleep. I was fairly sure I’d never open my blog again to make a new post, but something made me write today…. It’s now 6 months since I had been declared tumour free and a lot has happened in this time.

It’s been just 3 days since I went for my check up CT scan and was reassured that the lymphoma is gone for good.

Work keeps me busy, I will be the only surgical resident in my unit for the next 3 months as our seniors study for their final exams. Anne is neck deep in her postings as well, with frequent labour room and ward duties.

Koby (baptized – Nathan George Kochukaleekal Jacob) is now a 8 month old bubbly baby who keeps us just waiting to get home. He has slowly started to stand and coasts around on the furniture; he says ta-ta and just loves music. His grandparents always complain that they don’t get enough of him, but then neither do we!

God has continued to be good to us and we know we would not be this happy smiling family if not for his incredible grace.

Hope you all reading have a great new year.

Monday, June 26, 2006

In Conclusion....

The report of the PET scan reads as follows:
"Considerable reduction in size when compared to the previous imaging, PET-CT findings negative for viable tumour."

I hope that through this blog in the last few months; this chapter in my life has and will continue to give strength and encourage those who feel up against a wall. I would have never made it without so many who held Anne, Koby and me in prayer. God has shown me in so many ways, nearly every day that he looks after the smallest of things.
Thankyou Friends, family and all those around the world who held me up before God in prayer and in their thoughts.
God has given me a second chance at life and I am sure he will do the same for all who find it in them to trust him completely.

This will be my last entry in this Blog. Continue to uphold us in prayer. God bless and goodbye!

In his time, he makes all things beautiful.
Lord please show me everyday as You teach me your way
That You do just what You say, In Your time.

PS- my e-mail ID, will still be active in the future, please get in touch if anyone reading needs anything I can help out with.

Friday, June 23, 2006

To Hydrabad again.

Tomorrow (24 June) will be the PET scan, I have been waiting for – virtually for the past ?6 months! It’s just a confirmation that things are all right. And it will be.
We leave early tomorrow, morning at about 1 am, and drive to Madras. Catch the flight at about 5 am to Hydrabad. The scan will be early tomorrow morning and we should be able to leave, and catch our flight back at 6 in the evening and be home late night tomorrow.
Tripti and Santosh came over to our place in hospital for dinner tonight. It was great to have them over. The advantage of having two maids (one on loan for a month from Anne’s mum), is that we have great food 24 X 7!
Appa as CMC registrar is busy getting the results ready for the selections this year. He’s been really busy and working hard on this year’s set. He will probably kill me for this picture of him, taken at a completely different time and in a different context– but what the heck – it’s lovely!
There is a picture too, of Tripti with her hair that had been straightened out for their reception in Manipal. I quite like it, and I think it’s a good conclusion to the series of their wedding snaps. Thank you, all who wrote in wishing them well.
When they came over for dinner tonight, Koby welcomed them with a broad smile and promptly peed on both of them (welcome!).
I will close now and go get some shut eye - Looong day ahead!

Monday, June 19, 2006

Reception 2

So, just to get some words down to the pictures over the last few posts – the reception in Vellore went off really well. Poor Santosh and Tripti were still recovering from the crowds in Mangalore to get swamped by a couple thousand people again would have been a bit taxing. They are still recovering!

The entire reception was planned around our lawn at home, with various stalls for different foods – buffet style (dosai’s of various fillings, mommo’s sevai, cashewnut rava and various deserts). In Vellore a usual reception is a mutton biriyani served on a banana leaf – it’s what I look forward to in a wedding, but Amma was sure that this idea would work – and to say it in a very tail between my legs way ‘she was right!’. All those who came were impressed by the novelty and lay out. In all, it was a good evening for the couple – more importantly. Tripti’s classmates from college were there in full force being their usual boisterous and noisy self. It was great as they added a bit of life to the events. I have a snap here of a few of the “BONE” class.

Anne and I are back to work in full force. I have been posted on Orthopedic lists for these days and Anne is sorting out a lot of thesis and paper reading presentations. Koby has been his usual goo’ boi self!

I fly to Hydrabad this Saturday for my PET scan, it’s 3 months post radiation as of this week(! ya, I can hardly believe it myself), and this scan will be a confirmation that that I am tumour free.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

A great day in Mangalore.

I think wedding ceremonies can be very difficult to sit through, especially if it is your own sister ‘leaving’ home. We are back from Mangalore and Tripti’s wedding was such a lovely event. The Church was picture postcard perfect, there were so many of our family and friends to share in her happiness and she was looking nothing short of stunning! Santosh too was looking really great! I was given the responsibility, or should I say the honor of doing the bible reading – aptly from 1 Corinthians 13.

We had a choir from Vellore, all practiced and may I ready with a choral blessing and a special song. Koby was really well behaved and was absolutely no trouble to his parents. The inconvenience of the Bandh in Kerala, didn’t deter a good number of our family from Kerala from braving it to the wedding, despite having to walk back from stations, because some socially irresponsible people protested rising fuel prices. The clowns who made the most fuss, probably don’t even own vehicles – but that’s life.

Well I have a few photographs attached and will put in a few more as the days go by. Today – Anne and I got back to work and my parents drove back the cars from Mangalore. The reception in Vellore is still to go, this Saturday.

We have a lot to be grateful to God for, during this wedding, most importantly for Santosh – a partner and friend that I am sure Tripti will enjoy life’s roller costar ride with, secondly for a beautiful wedding that just fell into place when there were so many variables, and finally for providing friends and family that love them and have wished them well as they start of their life together.

Saturday, June 10, 2006

Tripti's getting married!

Tripti is getting married this Monday (12 th June). My sister and my best friend, will marry Santosh. It’s a bit difficult to believe that Tripti is getting married, it seems like it was just yesterday that I was stuffing marbles into her mouth, making her be the eternal wicket keeper as we boys played cricket. We stood side by side in Karate, Piano, dance lesions…. We could and can still share anything with each other - Now life has taken it’s natural course and Santosh and she will start off on an incredible journey together. And knowing Santosh, it’s going to be a good one, she is in good hands – I could have wished for nothing better.

Wish them luck Guys, Tripti means a lot to me. My next post will have pictures of the wedding, we leave in a few hours to Mangalore for the wedding, and we have a reception in Vellore next Saturday (17th).

Anesthesia posting is going off well, and I am learning as well as polishing up on my skills. Koby still has us up at night, and now that Anne’s leave is over and she has to get to work the next day, we are a bit stretched. I’ve not blogged in ages! Will write in with details of the wedding. A smile from Koby to sign off, doesn’t he just make your day?

Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Zzzz zzzz!

So, Plastic surgery has come to an end. Tomorrow I start a month of training in anesthesia. What a change from being on the operating side of the table to the non operating side! I was being teased by my Plastic surgery team, that I am going to be ‘passing gas’ for the next month. That not very parliamentary, but you see (for the non medical person) – Anesthetists and surgeons are usually poles apart. Always at a sort of “war”, the surgeon trying to push extra cases into a working day and the anesthetists on the look out for the crafty con man surgeon!

But jokes aside, I think this next month will be a really important one for me, because I need the experience of anesthesia for my hospital in Orissa. When I was a junior doctor in RUHSA, I used to operate cesarean sections by giving the spinal anesthesia myself and then turning the patient over – the team will pray before we start (by which time the spinal fixes) and then we would start the surgery. It was the norm to be surgeon and anesthetist in one, but I have had a bad experience me and I know better training may have prevented it.

The exposure to all these anesthetic gasses can make one really tired – I can just imagine that every evening is going to look like the picture below!

Koby is going to see his first pediatrician tomorrow! – He has a sort of allergic rash over his face and neck. Dr. Valsan was my pediatrician when I was a kid, and now he will look after Koby!

If some of you have missed reading yesterdays comments - my running partner (Pastor Carlos) during my Non Hodgkins time has been declared to be in remission. Thats great news - God has been so good.

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Post endoscopy

The endoscopy was done this morning and by Gods Grace it's normal. The entire exercise was just God's way of telling us that he is still in control and like Anne and I read today in our devotional - God doesn’t do halfway miracles.
The endoscopy as such was quite an uncomfortable experience. I was given some sedation before they started, and am very grateful for it. “The scope has to pass the upper esophageal sphincter” – Dr. Ashok Chacko (Head of gastro enterology) told me, “and once you help me by swallowing past that I will look after the rest.” Aaagh, it was uncomfortable, and I kept puking through it (thankfully I was on an empty stomach). I think I struggled a bit more than normal so they gave me a bit more of sedation. In the end, I was so sedated, that I can’t remember how it ended. The reports as I mentioned earlier are normal, no sinister cause for the bleed – most probably a little tear that caused it while I was retching on Sunday.

I slept the entire morning through and woke up for a late lunch. Amma is back from Singapore, and Anne, Koby and I drove home to see her. She has brought a whole lot of goodies for us. Koby as usual is the most spoilt of the lot!

Back to work tomorrow, it will be last day in plastic surgery and from next month I join Anesthesia for my next short posting. That will be something to look forward to!

Monday, May 29, 2006

Just another Manic monday!

It's Just another manic monday
Wish it were a Sunday
Coz that's my fun day!

Today was a busy day in theatre and I am on call again. The planned operation for today was cancelled for some unforeseen circumstance, but we were fairly busy with some new cases posted on the list. A young man smashed his face in after falling off his bike and needed a couple of plates to fix his broken jaw back together. The sad thing was he was drunk and drove. The majority of the trauma we see are people off two wheelers under alcoholic influence.

Anne cut Koby’s hair today. He’s really looking cute with his new hair cut. I was beginning to feel really J of his nice thick black hair. She snipped a small bit and has kept it to put into our baby book – I has a step by step detailed list of things Koby went through since birth.

We had a few visitors home this evening – my classmates from school – Sushil, Jey and Balaji dropped in to visit. It was a nice get together. Sushil is just back from Australia and will soon be in LSE for further studies. He is the only one from my school class that became a lawyer. He’s cut his hair real short – wish I had my camera then, I could have put the pic of all of us up for the benefit of our school class readers.

I am going in for an endoscopy tomorrow. I vomited a bit of blood on Sunday and Dr. Alok feels it’s better to get a look inside to make sure that there is no real sinister cause for the bleed (radiation or ulcers), it’s most probably just gastritis – but I can hardly claim I’m stressed out in this posting! But the thought of having a tube shoved down my throat is YUCK! Anyway will keep you all posted.

Friday, May 26, 2006


I am on duty today, and surprisingly for my rotten luck, it’s been quite an uneventful duty so far. Touch wood.

Anne is busy watching India get clobbered in the cricket match on TV; I care a hoot for cricket and am hardly bothered if there is a game on or not. Koby has no choice and has his face looking wide eyed at the tube light, sitting in Anne’s arms. He is so much better today; he has settled down and is moving his injected leg about – Thank God! There has hardly been any fever and he is his old cheerful self again.

Appa, who is in charge of the CMC entrance exams as the registrar – has been really busy for the past few days. The exams were over today and by Gods grace have gone off well. The co-ordination of any exam centers and examiners is not an easy task.

My pictures are not loading up today, well – will send some later! My new internet connection is dial up for the moment –I have given up my last broadband for a dial up thats much slower but loads cheaper! Hope to sort out a new broadband soon.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Andrew Lloyd Webber for the night.

It was time for Koby's 6 weeks shots today. He is REALLY irritable, as any parent will recall. It’s incredibly tough for a parent to go through a child’s pain (I’ve mentioned this before). Every time Koby startles in his sleep his swollen leg moves and he howls in pain. AAAAH, I wish I could take his shots instead. He is so exhausted from his crying that he has now literally cried himself to sleep. It’s great to sing him to sleep usually, but today he is in just no mood for the vocals. I’ve been singing Jesus Christ Superstar songs to him, at least the one’s I know fairly well – Lyrics are made up here and there.

Always thought that I’d be an apostle,

Knew that I would make it if I try

Then when we retire, we can write the Gospel

And they will all talk about us when we die!

(sung by the disciples after Jesus dies)

JCS. Rice and Webber.

I’ve been listening to Andrew Lloyd Webber since I was a kid. Appa took us to watch Evita when we were in the UK, as children. Brilliant is hardly the word. These lines from above are so true for everyone. It’s not only the apostles who lived with Jesus who have an epistle to share – it’s each of us. Living with him as a real human being or experiencing him at work in life is fairly the same thing. If I were to keep the stuff I’ve been going through to myself it would be such a selfish shameful waste. Not saying that what I write should be read in church as the Gospels!, but testimonies are to be shared and this blog is mine.

Anne is getting set to get back to work, she is nearly out of maternity leave. It's going to be hard leaving this little gem in someone elses care. God will keep him safe, we are sure.

Monday, May 22, 2006

Settling in to 56 C 1.

Life is settling down, and we are learning to fending for ourselves. To say that we were doing it alone would be an incredible fib, because we are being supported so much by our families, that I wonder how new parents manage without their parents to help them out.

The child I was talking about in the last post has done well and had a new pretty lip to face the world with. Repetitive trauma to her fingers and toes have caused them to resorb a bit, and since she feels no pain they are still a bit cosmetically unacceptable, but her stay in the ward has also been a place for her to get to know about her disease better and stay out of further harm.

Koby has a steady stream of visitors. My friends Abhilash and Asha are here in this picture. He is still active at night, and this evening we took him out for a small walk with us – till the milk shop. But the little chap slept through the entire walk.

So, what’s happening to me treatment wise, It’s a question, I’ve been getting asked by some on the e-mail and since I have not really been sure – I’ve kept from answering. I had my CT, last month and the results were sort of plus, minus. The mass is down to about 5 cm, that’s down by 3cms after the radiation. That’s good news, but there were doubtful new nodes in the upper chest, which may also be radiated tissue and not nodes. It’s difficult to say now and the PET scan will be the decider. The scan is fixed for the 24th of next month (June). I will go alone this time – no drive, I will fly to Hydrabad early in the morning and return at night. That’s what I have to expect treatment wise.

Sunday, May 21, 2006


It’s the 21st of May and yes, my birthday presents arrived bang on time. Both Koby and Anne were here on time on the 19th to celebrate. It was a lovely day. Anne’s mother and a maid from her home are here too. It’s just great to have Koby home. All my carpentry skills came in handy and Anne loved the new home. We still have a lot to fine tune, but our first home is off the ground. I guess it’s such a big step for us.

Koby has fallen in love with a little rattle his grandmother bought him. It gives a sort of musical jingle and it always stops him in the middle of his big cries! This Sunday, Anne and I are just settling in together – sorting out where things go and what sort of schedule to keep. Life has just turned so 180 degrees! Koby, just makes it all worth it! The pictures are from when the family was at our new home on the evening of my birthday. Tripti made and INCREDIBLE, death by chocolate cake, seen in the foreground.

Work is as usual. We have an 8 year old, who is posted for surgery on Monday. She has a disease that makes her insensible to pain. She can not feel any pain, and that is why she is posted for surgery tomorrow. We will never be able to give her ability to sense pain, but we are operating her for its consequences. In her ignorance, she has bitten off her lower lip, poked her eye in so many times that she is blind in one eye and near blind in the other and so on. We are attempting to reconstruct her lower lip tomorrow. Pain is such a nuisance and at times we wonder why we have to bear it, but through this girl, I have realized that it is actually a blessing. I guess the next time I recoil from a cup of tea that’s too hot to hold, I just have to look up and say thanks! And so much so for all that has come to be this year – the pain of chemo, the joy of Koby and family, the expectant hope for Tripti as she sets down the road of a family with Santosh – A look upwards and thanks. This birthday has been special, not because of what I have done over the last 26 years, but for the fact that I have been strengthened and healed through God’s miracle of pain to face and hope for tomorrow.

Saturday, May 13, 2006

With Anne and Koby for the weekend

So, here I am back in Kerala for the weekend, and having a whale of a time with Baby Koby. He has grown so much in a month and looking out at the world with a keen interest. I really doubt he is able to focus too much, but he is a keen observer of sound! I wonder if he remembers all the songs I sang him while he was in Anne's tummy! Here are pictures of him grinning, just before he nodds off to sleep and one with his proud grandparents.
I got a really big package delivered to the department office, yesterday before I left. It’s funny, because it had been bouncing between departments for the past 2 days – the secretaries suspicious of the possible bomb! And refusing to sign for it. I opened it to find a months supply of pampers from Parthi, on my best friends who lives in Africa, it was a laugh! The only “bombs”, will be what Koby creates in them!
Anne and Koby are doing well here; both of them are getting spoilt rotten by her mum. It’s nice to watch Koby enjoy being splashed with water during a bath, bicycle in the air, smile in his sleep; so many things that just make him so special and so much like the miracle that he is!My visit ends tomorrow, and I am back in theatre on Monday (I hope the train is on time). Anne, Koby and Amma will be there in Vellore on the 19th. The house is more or less ready for them; I haven’t brought any pictures of it for them to see, just to keep it in suspense till they reach!
Tonight, I will be on a different kind of duty - Koby is fairly well behaved at night - or so, Anne tells me. I really don't mind, he is more than perfect, and God has given us such a lovely gift in him that at times I wonder if we deserve so much grace. A picture of Koby and me to end with, there is a similar one of my father and me when I was a baby, maybe I should get them side by side!

Friday, May 12, 2006

Blog slacker!

I am sooo tired… Shifting into a new house, getting it in order and working plastic surgery at the same time can be …..
“‘You are losing it’, ole Chap”–I’m told, by one of my friends who’s been reading this blog regularly and not seen an update in a while. I’m slacking and I can feel it.
It’s true – My page heads with the words – “A guy going through Chemo,” – yeah – that was months ago….and “my life on a day to day basis”….. It’s been a while since I’ve had the luxury of writing every day! I have got to get down to changing my template sometime.
Last night, I crawled into the house at 5.15 am, only to leave at 6.45 again to regular theatre. I was on call and there were so many facial injuries to suture up in the emergency department that it just kept going on and on. It’s election season and the average drunk has a good reason to get sloshed and fall of his bike!! A policeman on election duty came with his face split open, after crashing his jeep into an oncoming lorry. The worst was a 14 year old, who rushed in with his 4th toe (of his foot), neatly wrapped in Ice, but too far crushed and late to re-implant.
I had my first visitor’s home for a meal today, Sabisachi and his wife joined me for a meal tonight. Saby is a fellow NHL patient here (from Calcutta), and we went through Chemo pretty much the same time. I had spent some time with them initially when they came and were worried about chemo, and told them that there was nothing to worry about. Saby has sailed through chemo, and was actually at work in between his chemo courses – he went through CHOP. Through time we have become such good friends that the ‘cancer underground’ will be pleased! His wife Swathi was one of Koby’s first few visitors! They have a twelve year old son, who is his parents pride and joy!
A few weeks ago, I had asked you all to remember Mrs. Chandrika Menon in prayer – a retired nurse, with Leukemia from Coimbatore. Her son in Law had read my blog and we met when they came for treatment here. She passed on to a better place a few days ago, and from the little time I spent with her, I am sure that she would have left so many happy memories with her family through her life. “I have come expecting to see a miracle”, she told me… I only pray she got it.
I leave to Kerala tomorrow, for the weekend. Anne and Koby – here I come!

Sunday, May 07, 2006


This Sunday I spent at home at Bagayam; the preparations for Tripti’s wedding are in progress. Wedding cards are probably the most exhausting part – you just keep writing and writing – hoping that you haven’t missed out names!
This is a snap of us at work; Tripti has the nicest handwriting, so she is delegated to the writing, I read and Appa put the cards into the envelopes! Hey, it isn’t as easy as it sounds, OK. We call Anne up in Kerala if we need to know spellings or names of people’s kids!
The picture of three of us is Nirmal, Edward and me, in Madras at Java Green. Nirmal is one of our classmates from school and then Medical College, who just got married a few days ago to Debbie – a German elective student who he met when she came to work in his mission hospital in Allahabad.
Koby and Anne are keeping each other busy. Anne’s dad is out of the country for the next two months, and called to say bye just before he left. I will miss seeing him when I go there this weekend. To end with, a picture that Tripti took in the car. It was on our way back on the drive from Madras. It looks like the sun has set fire to a power cable – Give me Red.

Saturday, May 06, 2006

Koby has company!

Anne's best friend Benny had been over to see Anne and Koby in Kerala. Benny lives fairly close by and she too has had a baby girl just a few months ago. The two mothers have put the two clueless kids together for a great snap! Koby on the right, is blushing scarlet - poor chap! Our classmates from Vellore reading this – here’s a second generation snap for you all!
I'm going over to Kerala, to see them his week end- Hooray!!, I will be there in 6 days, I can hardly wait!
The house is nearly ready - the gas people came over and fit in the gas cylinder. The mattress people came measured, and put new mattresses in place. I have been up for the past few nights, banging holes into the wall to fit up towel racks, plug points, soap and toothbrush holders and the list goes on...
The temperature in Vellore is a bit high, it was 44degrees C. I love the hot weather, but there is nothing Anne hates more. I wonder who Koby will take after. The summer heat reminds me of lazy summer holidays - playing basketball till late, hanging out with friends after school, summer vacations and so on.
Our list on Monday, for plastic Surgery will be tight with a lot of cases to finish within the usual time. I took a sort of class for the department on estimation of burn depth, and talked about various experimental ways to do so. It went off OK, but I miss having broadband internet in the new house (to prepare), I have to get that sorted out soon. Life is easier with Google searches!
So, as I was saying......The house is finally falling into place, the piles of junk are slowly finding a place to stay, I have even put up a painting on the wall - a beautiful oil painting of a village scene. The curtains are ethnic – chosen by Tripti. All that’s left -- is for you to visit?

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

A new month

It's a new month, and there is so much new that comes with a new month. A change of posting is one for a start - today I started my Plastic surgery posting. It was actually to be my Thoracic surgery posting this month, but since I spent a year working in cardiothoracic surgery, I have been allowed to do another posting instead. I missed my plastic surgery during the Chemo time, so am making up the time now!
Amma, Tripti and I drove over to Madras over the weekend, to get some wedding shopping done. I was a nice trip, and we got most of what we had scheduled to buy, done. Tripti was keen on a rather different colour for her wedding sari, and so we had a long search for the "right" one. Traditional Indian wedding saris are red or maroon and her Sari is going to be..... well, different. The only tough part of the trip was the heat, it was just incredibly hot, the car’s air con seemed like it was packing up and I had to cover the steering wheel with a hanky, just to hold it- hot!
Anne and Koby are still in Kerala, May 19th and they will be back home - hooray! Anne keeps me updated with latest Koby snaps. Here is one to share with you all.
Amma went crazy in a shop in Madras, meant just for new born’s - she proudly told the shop keeper “If I had more money I would buy all you have in your shop for my new grandson!!” (With all the money she had, she nearly did!). Koby now has a new playpen cum crib to sleep in and loads of clothes and blankets that Amma picked out. Anne's parents too are spoiling Koby rotten, Anne's father has got them an air conditioner to keep Koby from the oppressive May heat. Spoilt brat ! I hope he can live the common life that his father and mother are going to offer him in the new house!

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

House to home

Koby has been the hero of the last few posts. Poor chap, he’s not even here with me and his father can’t stop blogging or talking about him! He's pitured here with his great grandmother who came to visit at Anne's home in Tiruvalla. My fathers mum.
I made a trip over to the radiation therapy out patient department today. It’s been a month since radiation was over and it’s time to get a CT scan appointment made to see if there has been any change to the disease with the radiation. Unlike a PET scan, a CT scan will not be able to differentiate between cancerous active and dead inactive lymph nodes, but it will let me know if the radiation has shrunk the mass sitting in my chest – or if has grown oblivious to the radiation. The appointment is for Saturday – this will be the first of my scans I go in for without Anne around. Will miss her not being around, anyway she’s just a phone call away.
The small scabs of burnt skin from the radiation finally fell off today while I was having a wash. It’s like old things have passed away, I a new person…. The CT or the PET isn’t going to tell me something I don’t know.
I got the keys to my new apartment today. Amma and I went to check the place out. It’s a dusty mess, and needs a lot of work, but getting it together before Anne gets back is going to be great fun.
I don’t know how many of you know a song –“Rocky”. Not the movie, it’s a song I love and have sung on stage at various points in life.

We found an old grey house and you would not believe the way,
We worked at night to fix it up, to classes in the day.
Painting walls and sippin wine, sleeping on the floor,
With so much love for just two, soon we found there’d be one more..

And she said “Rocky, I’ve never had a baby before
– Don’t know if I could do it,
But if you let me lean on you, take your hand I might get thru it.”
I said “Baby, O sweet baby – its love that sets us free
– God knows if the world should end, your love is safe with me.”

I guess a lonely mind has time for nostalgia!

Monday, April 24, 2006

Cherry and Koby

I have hardly recovered from the weekend duty. We were up late in the night struggling with a perforated appendix and then had to go into theatre for the regular list at 7:30 Am. Today I got to assist on an interesting case for chronic pancreatitis in a child.

I was informed today about the passing on of a great man – Dr. A.K Tharien. He was one of the founders of the Christian Fellowship hospital in Oddanchatram and an incredible visionary for medical care in India. He was a person who took a great interest in Anne and me wanting to work in Baripada and helped us follow it through.

Koby and Anne are having a ball in Kerala. Cherry (Anne’s brother) was in Kerala for a short time and was really thrilled to play with his “awesome” nephew! Here is a picture with the two of them having a moment together! I just cant waith for them to get back. We still have not got the keys to our new home - I hope it come by the time Anne and Koby are back, was hoping to have shifted in before they came.... Lets see.

Friday, April 21, 2006

Through it all - I learn to trust.

The poor lonely father is clicking through pictures on the computer of Koby and Anne. They are in Kerala and enjoying the constant stream of people in to see the new baby. Koby behaved himself on the trip to Kerala. They were in an Air conditioned train coach, and he had another tiny baby on the opposite seat to keep him company. He must be having a great time in Kerala getting all the attention he just loves to have! ( just like his dad)
This picture alongside shows how Koby has more hair than his dad! He has his hands on his nose, but I doubt that it's because of how I smell!!
My sister - Tripti is just itching to get married. The countdown has begun and I can imagine her pushing time faster to June if she could physically do it! It seems like eons ago when Anne and I tied the noose, now with Koby around and all – but it’s probably the greatest thing I’ve done in my entire life. “Go for it girl” is all I can give her as sagely brothers advice!
The Pediatric surgery posting is sadly drawing to an end. This weekend will be my long duty and I am nearly done. I wish I hadn’t missed 2 weeks to radiation therapy, but I guess it just had to be. Dr. Viju John is a senior registrar with me and he was quoting the popular Hymn – “through it all – I learn to trust in him”, while we were talking about how God splats us into trouble rather than helps us skirt it or escape the easy way because through the tough times is when we see him work us through. I couldn’t agree with him more. Viju finishes his training here and will also be going to a mission hospital in Lumptaput, Orissa.
Today all the senior doctors of the CMC senate are biding farewell to Dr. Chacko Korula -our head of Nephrology, as he retires. His son Sushil and I studied in school together. His leaving CMC will be a great loss.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Eddie in town

Eddie has come down from Madras to see Koby. Edward is my best friend in Medical College and was my best man at our wedding. He has just got into a medicine residency with a hospital affiliated with Yale and will start in July. Once he is off to the United States – I doubt we will get to see him again. Anne took a good half an hour to get to the church from her home, when we were getting married and Eddie kept me company and kept reassuring me that she will come!

Koby was thrilled to see Eddie; he sat peacefully in his hands and then did both a big job and little job on him! Naughty boy!

Today is an important day for Anne and me – we have applied for a house on the hospital campus. Now that Koby has come along, it’s going to be impossible to stay in a single room – we will need a maid as well, once Anne is done with the maternity leave. The applicants are many for houses and the houses are few. Let’s see what happens. That’s something to pray about. The pick is at 12 noon today.

Anne, her mum and Koby leave to Kerala today – I hope I finish my operating list before they leave so I can at least see them off at the station.

Koby has been really spoilt - many of my college classmates are in CMC doing their postgrads - they have all been in to see him and carry him around. To the left Abhilash, Subhash and Patra. Annie on the right!

9pm - Anne and Koby are on their way to Kerala. Sob!

God feeds the sparrows! - We got the house!! The picks were good and we have a house in "the 'old' PG quarters". Thats the great news for today. It's actually such a great thing. It was quite doubtful, but God helped it work out in the end.

Sunday, April 16, 2006

Home for Easter

It's great to be home, Koby is back with his grandparents in the college campus. He needed phototherapy because he was a bit jaundiced. His blood group is special - I am A negative and Anne B negative blood groups, he is AB negative ( perfect - because those are universal recipients - i.e. they can be transfused with any blood group if they need a transfusion).
Koby is a real bundle of joy, he's up all night, and hungry virtually every half an hour- but all the effort of changing his nappies, feeding him is just sooo worth it, when he clings onto your shirt and sleeps - oblivious to al the commotion about him.
Anne has recovered from the delivery, her blood pressure is back to normal. Back home for Easter is great - full house. Amma's mother and sister Lizzie ammama are here. They are thrilled to see the latest addition to the family - Koby is luck because he has all 4 great grandmothers alive. One is 96 years old - In Tiruvalla - Anne's grandmother and she just can't wait to see her great grandson. Anne's mother is here and they will leave with Anne and Koby to spend a month in Kerala - to recuperate and be spoilt silly by her parents! Sniff! I'm going to miss them, but I have to sadly grin and bear it as such is the "custom".
We went over to the Scudder Auditorium this evening to listen to the Celebrant Singers. It was Anne's first outing after the delivery and my mum and Dad were left in charge of Koby.

Here is a picture of Koby and me with a big and little chocolate Easter Bunny! It's been a great Easter. Thank you - all of you who have shared this most beautiful experience with Anne and me. The e-mails of congrats and comments on the blog. I hope Koby will grow up to be and do as God has planned in his life. To be a channel of Gods love. As the leader of the Celebrants today said - when we enjoy a sip of cold lemon soda, we don't say what a lovely staw - we appreciate the drink. It's the same way we need to be the channels of what God wants in our lives. Koby is nothing short of a gift, to Anne and me - when we least expected, but he has a purpose and I only hope God reveales to us what he is to be and do.

Thursday, April 13, 2006


On April 11 at 1.02 PM, a 3.56 Kilo screaming Koby was born.
Anne is exhausted but doing well. This is the greatest thing that God has done in our lives. I usually have a lot to say, but this little chaps pictures speak a thousand words. All I can say is thanks God, we are so undeserving.
Pic1 - Anne, Koby and me day 1
Pic2 - Koby
pic 3 - My Appa, Tripti and Koby.

Sunday, April 09, 2006

Prayer requests!

Today I have no great blog entry, just prayer requests. Anne has been admitted with high blood pressure (Pregnancy induced hypertension is the medical term) and is in the ward. The pressure is still on the borderline high range, so if the pressures stay high – her Obstetrician Doctor Jiji may induce the labour, without waiting till the 17th when Koby is actually due. Please keep us in prayer, Anne is well now sitting around and reading books in the ward. She’s actually threatening to walk down to the Obstetric ward and do some work. My pediatric surgery ward is just a floor below where Anne is admitted, I am on 24 hour duty tomorrow, but I can keep popping in – it’s just ten seconds away. How God works things out! My normal ward would have been the other end of hospital! Here are pitures of the "expectant father and mother!", Z z z z .. .. passing time in the ward.

Another Aunty, who I had mentioned in the past, whose son in law had read the Blog and brought her to CMC, is not doing too well. They have a diagnosis of AML (Leukemia), and since she is quite elderly, a high mortality is a possibility if she chooses to go through Chemo. Palliation is an option, but from what I have come to know her by, she is a fighter. Please keep her – Mrs. Menon in your prayers.

A new friend I have made on the Blog, is battling Spinal Muscular atrophy – Pranay is a 2 year old who is battling SMA, his mother had read my Blog and got in touch with me. He is a fighter, just like me (his mother Kavitha e-mailed to say).. SMA is a difficult disease both for the children and the care givers in Pranay’s case his dedicated parents. Here is a link to a short write up on him. Keep in in your prayers too. In the last few months, I have come to realize that through prayer there is nothing that God can’t do, and that there is no weapon greater than prayer.

Actually there is a really cute wall poster in Anne's ward room - "Before you go to sleep, hand over all your cares to God - He's up all night anyway!"