About Me

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Bombay adda

No one ever told me that not everybody had to live with a chronic illness like mine. I didn’t know what it looked like, but I was grateful for that because I never wanted my children and future family to experience this as well. It is the only illness I will ever have the chance to survive, so as far as I can tell there’s no cure—at least at the moment. While the doctors continue giving us all hope that we may still be alive—aside from making sure we eat more and take our medications, at least enough to ensure we don’t die on the way—I know there is good news: I am alive, and will soon feel better. But it’s not an immediate miracle; in fact, it isn’t even a long-term plan that will help me out at all, let alone keep me alive in this world. The best way to describe how things work right now is ‘undetectable, yet untransmittable.’ For the longest time, I couldn’t remember who or where I was, nor if my name was actually my own, unless someone asked. And I could count on one hand all the friends I had left by then. My brain would freeze, leaving me in the dark until an important doctor or nurse came rushing up behind me, asking if I’d like him to do something for me. When he did, his hands were cold. His voice made the situation worse: He said, “I just want you to try one last thing. This is all your fault. You are killing yourself. There’s nothing anyone can do about this. Your health care team will keep trying to fight against the darkness, but they won’t be able to heal you until you stop trying. They will only do that until your death. Then they will give you something to say and some sort of closure. Until then, everyone will blame you and leave you alone, because nobody can really help you.” After that was said, I fell into what felt like a black hole, but thankfully, the hole was deep and full of air. At this moment, I lost everything—my mind, my emotions, even my sanity. It's been almost three months since I've left this house without even having the means to buy food. As this has gone on for over a year now, I have been trying to get these thoughts out for others, to share them, so they might understand what we are going through. On October 28th, 2017, all hell broke loose. A loud bang shook the building, and a single car rammed into my home the next day. Two men with knives stormed the apartment. One man threatened to kill me, the other injured me severely, trying to stab me several times with what looked like metal blades. The police arrived around 9:00am the following morning, and they took my husband away by the arms and legs and dragged him outside the door to be arrested. My mother stayed by my side for hours, holding a baby while her son and husband's bodies laid on the sidewalk. She didn't know what else to do. My father came running over after the police officers left, trying to pick up the pieces of her broken life. The couple and their two kids are still living in the park now, where they continue to recover. It hurts more than anybody could imagine. All of the people I love are dead, and nobody knows why. Nobody knows if I will make it out of here alive.

My eyes closed.

I opened them again and saw a hospital room. I had an IV hanging from my wrist. Every few seconds, another needle entered my vein, and I could hear faint noises coming from inside the machine, possibly the sounds of blood pushing back and forth against each needle. I was confused by everything happening around me; every pulse, every breath, every movement of a needle puncturing my veins, all mixed up together. In a blink of an eye, I was taken out of my body. And now, being moved around the halls of the emergency room, my eyes found themselves staring straight at a white nurse who wore fluorescent yellow rubber gloves like she was wearing latex candy clothes. Her face was covered in red bruises, along with clear blue markings on both sides of her neck. She looked like she just woke up from a nightmare.

“Can you tell me anything about what happened?”

“I’m sorry. I don’t have much to say. Just do you want me to administer antibiotics?”

“I’m fine about that. Did he kill himself?”

“No, just a suicide attempt. Let’s move on. Why are you sitting here anyway? Do you need to sit in this chair?”

“I’m sorry, I just want to talk to somebody.”

“I would like to know what happened to you. Is it possible that he killed himself while you were waiting for him? Would that explain everything?”

“I don’t know if he committed suicide or not—but the idea of doing that is ridiculous. Maybe he thought he could escape somehow... but maybe he saw something, or it’s possible that he’s hiding something out there... maybe it’s the lightbulb moment that killed him.”

“But it doesn’t matter—he was still here! You’re sitting here to listen to my story. That’s my job. You should just sit down and pay attention. You know how busy the ICU is and how many patients we have... don’t you think you could use some rest?”

“I’m not going anywhere. No offense, but this is my job, and I don’t do anything when I’m not here.”

The nurse held her head up high. Finally understanding something beyond ‘just doing my job’. She looked at me with calm and then smiled.

“So, why are we both here? Does he keep his phone nearby? Or does he need them? Do you want to chat?”

“I don’t know. I just want to get out of here. I need to go home and find the peace I need.”

“I can see that you’ve been through much more than I have, but you need help. Do you want me to give you some medicine? Maybe tell you something nice about your new boyfriend, too. I just want to help you get out of here.”

“No thanks. I’m pretty tired. If I have any questions about this whole experience... I don’t think I’ll be able to answer them.”

“Okay. Now go home and rest. We'll figure this stuff out tomorrow.”

I stepped into my bedroom, took off my old shoes (I have no clue what I do now), and placed them in a bowl as they lay on the green carpet—for later. I didn't know what the next day meant, but this wasn't looking hopeful any time soon. Even though I knew my life depended on it.

That night I spent many sleepless nights in my old bed staring at the ceiling hoping the shadows would eventually lift. Each time I woke up for the second or third time, the familiar feeling of fear flooded me, causing panic attacks. Eventually, I realized what needed to happen if I wanted to keep taking my medication. I had to go to the bathroom. How, even before thinking about it consciously, I knew the risks associated with moving around during treatment were extremely low—and impossible. To my relief, I heard footsteps on the floor and turned to see my mom standing over me. "Hiya, honey. What are you doing?"

"I'm resting here," I said, sitting on the couch. "I'm sleeping."

"Oh," she replied in astonishment.

"Do you know... what would the odds be, then, if someone tried to harm me? Or kill me? Am I crazy?"

She shrugged, trying to reassure me and hoping I wasn't acting out of character.

"Yeah, probably. That’s probably why your brother and sister are calling me. They know something bad has happened."

"Okay, okay, I don't know what to do. I'm scared for my family. Like, I've got no idea how they're gonna survive without you. I wish there was some way I could just get out and change the world… but there's none. Nothing I could do to make things better in my life. Ever."

"You're wrong. Everything I'm doing helps. You're helping my brother and sister. Even now, when I'm crying and hurting, they call because I'm not scared anymore. You're saving us."

"I don't know what to do. My dad said I shouldn't worry anymore, and my brothers said they wouldn't ask me to tell them what happened tonight. So I guess I'll just wait here… and see what happens. Tell them if you need to."

"Okay. Thanks for letting me stay here. I've never seen a hospital break down like this before. I was hoping they would be more protective... but apparently they didn't."

"Well, I guess I guess I'll just have to wait, and watch." she said in a kindhearted manner, reaching for her bag. "I never want to lose you. See you soon!" She rushed toward the door, closing it behind her, leaving only slight tears in front of me.

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