28th May, 2010, 9:00 am.:
First disturbing thought getting out of the bed was that Michelle would want me to be very punctual for the dinner tonight at Hotel Loco, as she’ll be introducing me to her dad (for God’s sake let me decide first if I want to get married right now or I want to focus on my career). It was a special day not because it’s Michelle’s birthday (what’s new..birthdays come every year) but because I’m supposed to get my first case at Springsfield Hospital, Milan, Italy. Its been 6 months I have joined this institute and done tonnes of research on the subject of psychiatry. Its the time for my first case. I was excited and bit nervous at the same time. Here comes the announcement “Dr.Wilson, Please report to the psychiatry ward, room no. 101. Thank you.”
As I entered the room Dr.Mathews said “Goodmorning young man, here is your first case. He is the famous industrialist Mr. Ted Williams, he is suffering from a rare yet a scary mental disorder called Schizophrenia.
A person suffering from this disorder can’t perform their daily activities perfectly in society. Schizophrenia is actually a frightening psychic condition which takes the sufferers from the real world to a world of distressing misconception, hallucination, risk etc. Schizophrenia can be grouped in two types of symptoms, positive symptoms and negative symptoms. Positive symptoms of Schizophrenia consist of dysfunction in thinking ability, hallucinations, delusions as well as immobility which come and go. Negative symptoms of Schizophrenia consist of uncommon actions such as blank looks, unhappiness, violent habits, serious voice, bad diet regime, lack of concentration as well as low overall performance level. ” Dr. Mathews’s voice started fading as he moved on. Now I was with my new case I’m sorry, I mean with Mr. Williams. He was fast asleep, may be due to the tranquilizers which might have injected to him to get him here.
I sat besides him on a stool and started reading Mr. William’s history, its important for a doctor to know his patient well. I was pretty much impressed with his history. More or less I could relate his life’s ideologies to mine. He too was a very ambitious person, no doubts in that after seeing his company’s turnover. Here comes the sad part of his life which reads about the sad demise of his daughter in an accident and sometime later his wife too passed away. As I was reading through I was disturbed by a male’s voice “Eric, I hope you’d not shared the surprises we have planned for her birthday with Lisa ? you know, she’ll say I don’t need all this but all I need is a full day spent with you disconnected with the whole world.” Mr. William said with a smile on his face. I recalled Lisa was her wife’s name. I tried to interrupt him but then these patients would not believe you because for them the world, the imaginative world in which they live is the only reality that exists. According to the scientific concept their brain develops a parallel character in their mind and they start role-playing that character. And the most interesting fact about this state of mind is that they imagine this character to be exactly the way they actually aspired to be in life but could not lived that way because of whatever reasons and circumstances.
“Eric do you remember her last birthday when I couldn’t make it to the dinner and she was so Damn angry and cried whole night complaining about the same old thing that I don’t give her enough time. That night I realized my mistake and wowed to make her next birth day real special” said Mr. Williams looking at the chair lying besides his bed. These patients’ mind take them to that point of their life where things were good and then they start imagining their life further and also role-play the way they actually wanted it to be in reality.
“Did you tell Lisa to come at Hotel Loco here in Milan? you know this place is her favorite dining destination. “he said again. Now I’d to react and react in a way that I could probably take him back to reality, not right now but gradually over a period by getting him accustomed to his life’s bitter facts. “Mr. William, Lisa said ‘No’ to your dinner invitation and she told me to tell you that she does not want to meet you again.” I said (I had to..)
“No, she can’t do this to me” he said screaming and burst into tears. “I know all these years I was so non committal to her and our family. I never gave them enough time and always kept running behind money and power. Initially I used to tell myself that I’m doing all this for them only but with time I got addicted to it and tend to ignore all little warnings, nature gave me. But that evening changed it all when after that dreaded accident she went to coma (state of unconsciousness-caused by a serious brain injury) and docs nearly declared her dead but then her condition improved miraculously and she survived. That day I promised to her that I won’t leave her alone ever and will give her and our family enough time and care. I promised I’ll be a good husband and a good father. Please tell her to talk to me once, I’ll explain her.” Mr. William said sobbing. But in reality no miracle happened that night, Lisa couldn’t survive that accident. She died that night. But Mr.William’s brain stopped accepting reality there and then and since then he started living in his world of illusions.
I gave him the required dose of tranquilizers and walked out of the Room No. 101. Being a doctor I should not be emotionally attached to the happenings and incidents of my patient’s life but then as I said earlier, his aspirations resembled mine significantly. I suddenly realized that I don’t want to live the same fate that Mr.William had to live. Something shooked me from inside and suddenly my heart filled with the super-flous emotions that were being buried for the race of money and career.
I stopped a cab and called Michelle. “Baby I wouldn’t ignore you on your birthday and will love you always. I would do everything the way you always wanted me to.” I said (without even thinking what I’m saying.) “are you o.k ?” Michelle asked in a shocking tone. “Yes, I’m good. Love you.” I said smiling on myself and asked the driver to move towards Hotel Loco.
That very moment I understood the true meaning of “Life, Liberty and The Pursuit of Happiness” by Thomas Jefferson.
Moral of the story: If you spend all your time and energy on the materialistic stuff,
You will never have room for the things that are of utmost important to you.