Few people understand what the disabled go through better than Anshi, 36, an executive with a corporate company who has been there and back.
A day after a holiday in Goa in August 2008, Anshi suddenly felt dizzy while fiddling with his TV remote. His fingers got jammed on the remote, his vision blurred and everything he saw got a red tint, as if he was looking through coloured glass. He fell down on the floor unconscious and was immediately rushed to a hospital.
The only thing he remembers, during his 15-day stay in ICU, was giving his card and bank details to his wife just in case if it was needed. He stayed in the ICU for 15 days. Doctors told his family that they would have lost him if they had reached a few minutes late. He was diagnosed with brain haemorrhage after aneurysm, the medical term for abnormal widening of a portion of artery. With just 2% chance of survival, and a big risk of permanent disability to other parts he was operated upon by neurosurgeon Dr Vipul Gupta.
He lived but his right hand and leg were paralysed. "Only my left eye worked, but I had limited vision. It was like looking through a small circle from one side of the eye," says Anshi.
After 15 days, his senses started working but he couldn’t recognise people. Anshi was discharged after three weeks, he had to stay in bed for five months. “I felt like a helpless baby, it was horrible as people treated me different without meaning to. I'd been very active all my life, sitting idle made me angry and frustrated,” he recalls.
“When they were around me, my family would say that I would be okay in a week. But then I'd overhear snatches of conversations where people said my chances of getting back to normal were remote," he says. Slowly, over 15 weeks, Anshi started getting better, except for his eyes.
But an eye operation at the AIIMS in November restored full vision. “It turned out to be 6/6. Earlier, I wore specs,” he says. He was fit enough to get back to work after 5 months.
“My recovery from the brain haemorrhage was a miracle. Six people had died with similar condition in my ward during my stay there.”
After three years, he says his life is far more disciplined than before. Anshi now works for another MNC as a business developer. “He has become a better human being in his second life,” says his wife, Parul Singh (name changed).