(Shah Jahan was the name of a Great Mughal Emperor who built the Taj Mahal in memory of his beloved wife Mumtaz Mahal.)
Dr. Warrier helped him understand that marriage and life within CML are just as normal for him as for any one else. He also suggested the name of another Glivec recipient , who co incidently carried the name “ Mumtaz”. Shajahan stuck around the OPD in search of his Mumtas until he finally caught sight of her while on one of her routine visits – and then Cupid struck – and before he knew it, he was totally in love with her.
Shajahan called me to talk about this and informed me of his intention to send in a formal proposal . But, unfortunately, her father rejected the proposal as he was not employed – (His views were justifiable as he wanted someone who would be able to take care of his daughter, and he could not visualise a man without a job as a possible son-in-law.). This sent Shajahan into depression and a sad mood and he called requesting me to talk to her father (which request I gently refused as undue interference). However both Viji and I kept counseling him on the importance of being gainfully employed and impressing his future probable father in law with his diligence.
Then came April 22nd and the FOM Kerala meet at Calicut and we got to see the beautiful Mumtaz, and that was when Mumtaz saw Shajahan too ,and you are right if you think Cupid struck again!!!! Her father was also present and upon great pressure from Shahjahan we spent time with Mumtaz and her father telling them about lasting attachments were being formed within the group of patients in GIPAP; about how people were talking to each other, e mailing each other, families making friends and physicians happy with this scenario. Viji also re assured them that we , the TMF associates were always in touch with everyone . For good measure we also pointed out the core volunteer team in Kerala, Shahjahan one of them of course and conveyed to the father – daughter the wonderful work they were doing with the patient group in Kerala . Even though the father was still very reticent we could see that Mumtaz was interested. Apparently after this meeting she did begin to communicate with Shajahan. After a few phone calls and text messaging she declared her love to Shajahan. He was so happy that he immediately called and informed me.
She expressed her desire to her father who has now happily agreed to their “ Nikkah”.
Let’s cut to the Trivandrum FOM meet held on Nov 17th and a confident Shajahan announced “I am Shajahan, and CML helped me find my Mumtaz “
This declaration and the confidence and enthusiasm with which it was made , created such a positive atmosphere at the meeting and the feeling of despondency in many participants seemed to lift very perceptibly. A new confidence and optimism can now be felt in many patients and families as more and more such stories of personal, emotional and social successes are shared in meetings and via e mails –
Such is the magic of Max and the meetings that we hold —truly a synonym for “ together we share and learn”…even as far as seeking and finding life partners!