30 May 2014

Lessons in life: What a perspective!!!

A few weeks back, one of our teammates and a personal friend of mine – Karthik Mani – took a sudden leave of absence. All of us were aware of the tough times his young nephew was going through. The kid’s liver was destroyed beyond the limit at which the liver could regenerate itself if surgically operated on. (Btw, I learnt that liver is the one of the rarest of rare human organs that can grow back after surgery – provided there is a minimum amount left). The only hope was a liver transplant – and there was a long queue for that. Not to speak of the complications that a large tumor might have on a kid’s liver’s shape and position – thereby making a transplant potentially impossible.

Eventually, there was a donor found and since this had to be done in matter of hours, he took the first flight to be by his nephew’s side as they started the surgery. Almost eight hours of surgery later, it was a grand success.

And that is when my friend wrote to all of us a quick email to thank us for our concerns thru what turned out to be a picture perfect surgery. But that is not what caught my attention. It is how he ended the email that captivated me. With his permission, I have copied his exact words here…


With most organ transplant, it is always somebody’s misfortune that is your good fortune. All we can do is pray for them and say thank you!

I was stunned by his magnanimity. Like everybody else, I was so overjoyed by the good news that I could think no further. And here was my friend, who paused to think the other side of the coin.

And it dawned upon me then that the donor had to be in a age group close to my friend’s nephew. Which would mean some parents lost a young son or daughter. In all likelihood, in a terrible way.

And that it is when I was frozen. I got that lump in my throat thinking about those parents. What an unthinkable loss. And then in a minute my mind went back to my friend. What a great perspective he had.

How many of us really pause to think the other side of the coin? And yet, there is almost always another side to everything. Truly understanding both sides probably gives us the best perspective of anything.

I have always maintained that in life, I have risen to whatever I have risen to because of some strong shoulders people around me have lent me to step on. A couple of weeks back, I realized how broad my friend’s shoulders were.

Thank you, Karthik Mani, for setting yet another example for me. If not anything else, you have made an organ donor out of me. We can be of tremendous value even after we die.



Posted May 30, 2014 by Rajib Roy in category "Musings

34 COMMENTS :

  1. By David Shen on

    Being an organ donor requires a person to live beyond themselves. It is the most selfless of acts when realistically it won’t impact the donor as they no longer have use of it. Give my best wishes to Karthik

    Reply
  2. By David Shen on

    Being an organ donor requires a person to live beyond themselves. It is the most selfless of acts when realistically it won’t impact the donor as they no longer have use of it. Give my best wishes to Karthik

    Reply
  3. By Sibapriya Dasgupta on

    I seem to be falling in love with your style of penning these not so common and even very common day to day affairs! I am beginning to have withdrawal symptoms if I miss out on some of them! Well doctors thrive on others miseries. They are the ones who are witness to both sides of the coin! But life is like that, at least for them!

    Reply
  4. By Sibapriya Dasgupta on

    I seem to be falling in love with your style of penning these not so common and even very common day to day affairs! I am beginning to have withdrawal symptoms if I miss out on some of them! Well doctors thrive on others miseries. They are the ones who are witness to both sides of the coin! But life is like that, at least for them!

    Reply
  5. By Karthik Mani on

    Thank you for the nice post and the really kind words, Rajib. Madhumolli, you are accurate – even a person in the 2nd half of their life can donate to a very young person and change their life; in this case it happened to be a donor of nearly the same age – early in that person’s life. Vicky, just as you did, the magnanimity of the donor made me go and check my driver’s license to see if it had the little heart symbol for agreeing to be an organ donor. It is a shame that many advanced countries have an opt-out program for organ donation and many states in the US persist with an opt-in program. We can do our part by opting in when we renew our license.

    Reply
  6. By Karthik Mani on

    Rajib, given the number of people that read your blog, I am sure a few will take action and register. For Georgian readers, they can register at https://www.donatelifegeorgia.org/register/ if they don’t wait till their next driver’s license renewal. (it is a link you can get to from dds.ga.gov) Would you mind adding a link in your blog post?

    Reply

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