I leave Bhopal on 15th just 5 months after arriving here. Not much has changed in the world though I have spent very little time looking at any news.
Much has changed in my world though.
One of those Linked In contacts, Mohan who has a healing centre, made while I was in UK and who I noticed was located in Bhopal so wrote. We have met in the flesh several times and I have seen the work he is doing and he offered me a part in a healing centre he is working on with a collaborator to offer a complete holistic healing at a residential centre some way away from Bhopal. I had said that the daily clinic was not for me as I don’t want to live here full-time, though that has been proposed several times. The centre, though, with non-Indian guests could be a place I could spend some time.
In response to this suggestion, I often say, “find me an Indian girlfriend and I will learn Hindi too!”. I am sometimes taken seriously!
As I have been working in the Recovery Room with the nurses, I have seen much of the way they work and also chatted with Alice, a UK nurse who was here for a few weeks. There were times when I thought she would give birth to kittens; maybe a hygiene difference, or a method, or the age of the equipment. She had to retrain herself in using a manual blood pressure monitor and her efforts of teaching a nurse about the blood system just failed in frustration for both.
But, as I always say, it works here, and we cannot impose our ‘western’ ideas of standards and methods automatically. There must be empathy with the people, the culture, the experience and the training as well as expectation. There is also a hierarchy here which is difficult to bust even in Sambhavna which prides itself on equality. Where society itself has a strong cultural norm it is difficult to get the individuals out of it even if the establishment wishes to.
The doctors, particularly Qaiser and Jay have been encouraging with those mentioned asking when I will return. Many patients have also asked. We had a serious, if brief, discussion about how they can continue to give the sort of work I do on a permanent basis without me moving here. For me, the best solution would be to get a recent physiotherapy graduate with an open mind. Probably a woman. Then I can return for short visits and teach them my style with Spineworks. I have a feeling they WILL take it forward though I am unsure of the financial implications of another salary.
My brief time at Chingari has been lively and fun-filled and I have experienced a wide variety of patients. Sometimes our room has had two or three babies all crying simultaneously and sometimes they fall asleep during treatments. There have been older children too. For me, two teenage brothers, Umai and Azar, both with Muscular Dystrophy, probably living out short lives, and a Shamia a young
woman really affected by Cerebral Palsy with
weak and tight legs. She has been through operations to cut tendons and ease
the restrictions. Together we managed to help her to stand upright and balance
on straight legs – a difficult feat for her. Sounds easy for you, yeah? That’s
what we can learn here.
There are several other young men who come in and do exercises of various sorts and Sanjay works with them every couple of days. He keeps a very good idea on what they are doing and knows which are the ‘lazy’ ones.
Partly because of that it is not always a story of success. Just over two years ago I helped a young man stand, some of you may remember his picture.
But today all he can do is hold his legs under him and swing them through as he moves with his arms. I remember Sanjay saying he was lazy which was why I wanted him to stand to show him what was possible.
Something in him maybe does not want that. Who knows.
Finally, as I pictured Huma and Rishi with my hat, then I must balance it by adding Sanjay – looking a bit serious here. I definitely think Huma looks the best in it! (But maybe that is tempting gender politics.)
I am now off to play in Rishikesh on a teacher training in Astanga yoga, my own practice, so will sign off this blog. I hope those of you who have come across it, read it, shared it etc have enjoyed these occasional writings. I will let you know when the book is out. This time I may get kindle and physical done together.
Enjoy YOUR life journey.