It was 10 Jan 2014, 2.00 pm, I was wheeled into the OT for cesarean. I could have walked but the doctors insisted wheeling me on the stretcher which was totally unnecessary, I can bet on that. I was in my complete senses, all hale and hearty, no trouble what so ever. The only reason doctors chose to do cesarean was because the baby refused to come out, though they were in double mind. Much later, after they have me cut open they realised, anyway I couldn’t have had normal delivery so good they operated. The realisation only came once my belly was cut open like a watermelon and they could see every seed and fibre but I was thankful it came, otherwise I would have suffered labour pain for 10/12 hours and then they would have cut me so by the grace of almighty, I got saved from that pain.
We have a very filmy notion of everything, after all we are brought up on the staple diet of Bollywood. In all the movies, operation theatre is pristine white, clean room with all the high tech machines, big round light lamp in the centre, doctors in white lab coat with their mouth covered. As I got wheeled in, the first thought which crossed my mind was, ‘Why is the OT looking like store-room?’ There were roles and roles of green cloth kept all over the room. It was looking more like dhobi ghat where the clothes been just washed and are lying on the floor in a big mass, piling up to be a mountain where they are waiting for dhobi to put them on the cloth line for drying.
My doctor walked in with another two lady doctors. One was her assistant Jaya and other was Anaesthetist, couple of minutes later two boys who was looking like local chai walas walked in.
It happened so that they were ward boys and had some role to play during operation. To start with, I was still on the stretcher, so I had to me moved to OT table. They tried lifting me with their collective strength, I insisted on moving myself as I was fully conscious besides dressed in a hideous gown nothing else was bothering me but they strongly insisted on lifting me, I was wanting to tell them I probably weigh more than a truck but I refrained from imparting gyan and I quietly allowed them do whatever they considered their job.
Now lying on the table, I was thinking what next? When my doctor explained me, I will be given anaesthesia in the spine which will render my lower part sensation less. So I sat up and the doctor injected me, it was like a bee stung. Next, she started dabbing my body with cold cotton swab, simultaneously asking me if I can feel it. Honestly, I was totally confused, I couldn’t feel or not feel. So after 5 minutes they decided to cut me. I was lying on the table half nude, surrounded by 4 man and 3 woman, it was the most embarrassing confused moment of my life. I was embarrassed because I was nude and I was confused about my embarrassment, they couldn’t have operated me with my clothes on.
Meanwhile, the chai wala look-alike ward boys where standing at a distance and giggling,I have no clue what was so funny. The doctor cut me open, and the first word she said was, ‘Oh shit’, my heart skipped a beat and I thought, ‘Now what? Hope everything is ok. Hope baby is ok.’ I mentally visited all the gods I personally know and also called out to the one I don’t know. After a pause, the doctor said, ‘There is so much potty in your belly, baby must have been pooping for at least a week now.’ Sometimes in life, you should take things literally as it can save you from lot of unnecessary trouble, ‘shit’ can actually mean ‘shit’ and have no other reference or meaning.
After that they continued the operation like professionals. They were chatting about their colleges, bitching about some other doctor, somebody’s mobile also rang in between, the chaiwalas kept talking and giggling amongst themselves. The only person who was interested in talking to me was Anaesthetist, she asked about my profession, I told her ‘Advertising’. She continued to enquire about my work. I was wanting to tell her that till date I don’t know what I do but instead I politely explained her about brands and communication. She showed more interest, she enquired about the last film I have worked on. I told her, It was for Maaza, than she wanted to know the script, now I was getting impatient about her interest in my professional life. All the while she kept dabbing the cotton swab and checking me, later I got to know since the operation went on for more than anticipated time she was fearing that effect of anaesthesia might wear off mid way so she was continuously checking without making me suspicious. Had that happened, It would have been one painful experience.
Few minutes later, I felt couple of hands pushing my belly and I heard reverse countdown, 3, 2, 1, go….. much like rocket being launched. There was the loudest shriek I have heard in my life. It must have been heard till the waiting room on the ground floor. One of the doctor, brought the baby to me and said, it’s a girl. And I thought, she is my baby girl and soon the brain jumped to the next thought, ‘I can feel my ribs’. Finally after 9 months I could feel my ribs, with all the weight gain they had vanished somewhere and they miraculously repaired soon after delivery.