Tale of a humorous ‘anaesthesia-induced’ conversation
(This is not a story actually. But fact is stranger than fiction, right?)
Before beginning, let me dedicate this to my doctor Lt Col Momin Uddin Kollol sir who cheered me up saying soon I am going to become his colleague.
Now, allow me to take you to the operation theatre where it all began. I was going to have a septoplasty (that is, the bone right in the middle of your two nostrils gets straightened if you have a deviated one. They suck, believe me) along with HIT removal (in layman's term, we call it Nasal polyps. Ring any bell?)
And here I was, lying on the operation table, waiting to get dozed off. Unbeknownst to my knowledge, I was about to be given local anaesthesia which technically keeps you awake during the R rated violence of a surgery. There was Pethidine to make me sleepy. Right after the Pethidine thing was pushed inside the canola attached to my vein, I asked the assistant, "So I will be sleepy and talk shit, right?"
She smiled. "You feel dizziness?"
Boy, I was already in Wonderland. You feel numb and heavy but you actually hear everything. I wasn't dead, I thought. And then, I felt the funny feeling gushing inside, overflowing, overwhelming.
Suddenly I said, "It feels so dreamy, more like being on LSD". I heard Kollol sir's laughter, "Oh boy, LSD isn't a drug actually".
Then I overheard the word "hallucination" in low voice and few chuckles afterward. Everyone inside was waiting for me to get in the right dizzy state. And then, I faintly remember the starting of my "hallucination" conversation.
Suddenly I asked the doctor, "Do you believe in aliens?"
"(Smirky voice) umm, I don't think I do. Do you?"
I said that I don't. But only I know, even in my teenage, I believed that watch from Ben 10 cartoon was real. I said in a dramatic voice, "The world is so beautiful". Someone responded, "Yes, it is".
The operation began. I could sense some metal pieces getting inside the nostril, making it wide open. It was supposed to be scary but I didn't feel any fear nor pain. I felt nothing at all. Rather, it all felt funny, almost ticklish in nature.
While working on my nose, Kollol sir asked, "So Esha, why are you joining the army?" I swear I had prepared a written answer to this question with many reasons in it. But I can tell you, being Rambo wasn't on the list.
I said, "It's Rambo. You know that movie star? I wanted to be like him". "So you like movies?" he asked. "Uh-huh". I could tell he was burning a side of polyp while asking this. " Esha are you a Salman Khan fan? Or Shah Rukh Khan?"
I took a pause. Do you see sentences forming waves dangling in the air and then inserting your head? I saw it right there. What was the question? Oh, famous Sallu and SRK debate. I said, Aamir Khan.
"Dil Chahta hai is your favourite then?" he laughed, along with others in the room. I didn't mind.
"Yeah , but Dilwale dulhania le jayenge and Kuch kuch hota hai- they are good too". I wondered talking movies was deception, distracting me from sensing pain. But I'm a grown up too, I thought. Then suddenly, I found myself saying, "Let me recite my favourite rhyme.
"Twinkle Twinkle little star...". Unfortunately, I forgot the rest. There was laughter around. For what, I don't know. The word "hallucination" kept resonating inside the room.
HIT was removed. He kept working on the septoplasty thing, "So who is the Department head now? I said the name. "He must be a smart man, right?" I said, "Yes, he is a nice fjbfkkdnkjesbjskjdvk (I don't remember what I said afterword).
Suddenly, a bit of seriousness grew in his voice. He said, "Now, this will hurt, okay? I want you to say these things, repeat after me", then he recited some verses from the holy Quran and I followed him. This was an incredibly powerful moment during the whole surgery. I felt so calm.
Surgery approached towards the end. He said, "You are a brave kid. Someday you will be a Brigadier". Other times, I probably would've responded politely. Instead, I said, "I think I will". Then I added, "My friend told me I am a tough cookie. I think it's true. He said, "Yes, I think your friend is right."I asked, "Mr Kollol, do you write books too? Like an actual author selling his books on the fair?" He smilingly answered, "Yes, I have. Do you want me to send them over to your place?"
I said, "Absolutely, with autographs on the front page saying, To Esha, the famous movie star."
Surgery ended. The dizziness was over. And the first thing I asked to my doctor was, "Do I look terrible? Tell me the truth. I can handle it". Even though my nose was swollen like a balloon with lots of bandages and I-don't-know-what stuffed inside the nostrils, he smiled and said, "You look absolutely fine!"
False, because I had a long look at my nose in the mirror few hours later.
After the surgery, the vague recalling of this conversation felt traumatising. I asked Kollol sir if said nonsense during surgery, because I have a funny feeling that I did. He assured me I didn't. Later on, I found out, he told my brother everything. The world is so much of a pathetic place. Sometimes you breathe embarrassment in instead of oxygen.
I kept wondering, was it hallucination though? Or I am actually this funny?