Date: 19th Oct 2011
It was providential that young Sheeba came today to the office . She had been to see her physician in Tata Hospital and then come by to say Hullo and collect the re approval letter so that she could pick up her allotted supply of Glivec for the next 90 days .
Sheeba was a sweet little teen when she was diagnosed about six years ago. Even at that time it was difficult to pin her down to one place , one thought , one moment of peaceful speech. She was like an impatient butterfly wanting to fly away the minute you got a grip on her to the next moment , next thought . She brought into our little office with her so much energy , brightness and sheer joy.
She had just finished high school and was to enter one of the best Medical Schools in the country to pursue her dream of becoming a doctor.
We all know this is one of the most exacting and most difficult course to take up ; the curriculum is strenuous and stressful and involves continued attention, long hours of study and work and complete dedication of time and energies.
While on the threshold of this great step in her life this happy go lucky child was diagnosed with Leukaemia . When I think back to the time I first met her what struck me most was that this bright and lively girl was very comfortable with this new situation in her life and did not for a moment look like there was a set back in her life or in her plans for the rest of her life.
Over the years I have only seen her bloom and glow – despite the rigour of her studies and long working hours , every term she completed , each year of Med School she completed I have measured with her growing composure , confidence and sheer exuberance .
Today was no different – entering my room with a spring in her step and laughter in her twinkling dark eyes with amazing candour she said she was in a tearing hurry as she had to get back to her job in Delhi – Oh Amma she said , we Doctors have no time to take days off ! you know that .
I actually did a double take – even though I have followed her every term exam and progress in Med School it hit me like a ton of bricks ! this little girl was a qualified doctor ! Leukemia be *&^%$# she had made it !
She was a Registrar in one of the top class teaching hospitals , in Delhi this time – working in the Dept of Cardiac Surgery !!
I present to all of you Dr Sheeba Zaheer !!!
Will some one get me my smelling salts please ? I might need the attention of a cardiac surgeon …
Kids can indeed rise above Cancer
Report by Viji Venkatesh