I don't know which of the above I carried with me when I travelled from the U.K. to India to get my mother operated. She had been suffering from progressive and relentless backache for years and had recently started experiencing altered sensation on both her legs. Being a doctor anaesthetist myself and married to an orthopaedic surgeon, I knew exactly what the implications of ongoing untreated spine disc disease would be and also the possible consequences of major spinal surgery. However I believed in 'Him' as one does believe in the Almighty.
I didn't ask 'Him' any questions nor did he offer any answers because the equation was simple - based upon my faith in his credibility and 'His' confidence.
My parents live in Mumbai which is awash with medical experts almost to the point of 'the problem of too many'! There are many good doctors, some better than others but I naturally wanted the best for my dearest. So I didn't have to make a choice, for me the path to happiness for my mother was crystal clear - we were travelling to Nagpur to heal my mother's sore back, just as one travels far and wide to attain sanctity.
When we met 'Him', he and his family put us at ease instantly by their jovial demeanour. We had to remind ourselves that we had brought my mother fasted (without any other preoperative preparation) for a supra-major urgent spine operation in hope of relieving her crippling pain and preventing long term devastating disability; albeit knowing that nothing is guaranteed in life and devastating complications could result from the surgery itself.
While the rest of my family were being looked after hospitably at their home, my mother was being equally hospitably looked after in 'His' hospital. Four hours of intensely skilled supra-major lower spine surgery complemented by the very high standard of perioperative care provided by the anaesthetist, physiotherapist and all hospital staff led to a miraculous recovery for my mother and she was able to walk pain-free the same evening! 'He' had made it all look so easy...
We were discharged from his hospital on the third postoperative day and flew back to Mumbai on postoperative day 5. When our relatives started visiting my mother in the following weeks, it was in their expressions of relief, that it dawned on me how surreal our entire experience to and fro Nagpur had been.
At this point I will reveal that 'He' was Dr Manoj Singrakhia, my husband's best friend and accomplished spine surgeon. But I had only met Manoj a couple of times and had heard about him from my husband as his most dependable and fun-loving friend.
Therefore I do not want to belittle what Manoj did for my mother and my family by the fact that he's my husband's best friend. A friend in need a friend indeed, however for me who didn't really know Manoj, 'He' was the 'healing hand' that helped my mother get back to her quality of life. I dare not say 'thank you' to him but would like to applaud his professional dedication and wish him and his wonderful family all the successes of life.
On my way back from India to the UK I realised that 'He' had allowed me to achieve great expectations for my mother's health in return for simple faith in his sincere efforts.