History repeats itself…
“History repeats itself” is an old saying. I remember reading this line so many times. We never could be sure when, where and how history repeats itself. But in our practice, we do see this phenomenon very often. Patients come with same complaints or same History. For example, an Asthmatic will come with same history of wheezing and a migraine patient will come with headache, what else?
So Doctors tend to become a bit casual when they see old faithfuls. I believe in maintaining a primary case file or an in-patient file neatly and always try my best to keep it up-to-date. But when the old patients come repeatedly, I just copy and paste the history notes from previous files to the new file. A senior Doctor once happened to go through one of my charts. He obviously was interested because I had inserted print-outs from my PC. So next time when we were chatting, he told me “You do a pretty good job of keeping the files up-to-date. But in one of your files I was surprised to see same notes on different dates, everything same; now I definitely believe “History repeats itself”
It was just that in the casual mood of knowing the case well, I had copy pasted even the vitals and examination part from the past files. That meant the blood pressure, pulse rate and every other information was the same in almost all the admission notes. I am more careful after that when I copy and paste from old files.
His and Her Story!
I have known this young fellow for about five years. He came to me within a couple weeks of his marriage. I didn’t have many clients that evening and I saw this boy beating around the bush. I could see from the window there was only one person sitting outside the Clinic. I asked him, “Okay, spell out your problem” He told “I want an abortion for my wife” I was shocked and yelled, “But WHY?”
He told, “See Doctor, we are just married and my wife is 3 months pregnant. My family will be scared and my friends will ridicule me” I asked, “Is the baby yours?” He was confident, “It is mine. We love each other and did IT after our engagement. But now this has become a problem. My family is too conservative and they will kill me” I asked again, “Is the girl here?” she was the person waiting outside and he called her in side. I saw a demure young girl who didn’t look pregnant at all. I asked her, “Do you want to abort?” The girl was very forthright in what she said, “I love this man and this is his and my baby. I want it. But I am ready to do anything for him because he is scared”
Now my job was easy. I told them, “See you just can’t abort a child of your love. All you have to do is to confide in your Obstetrician and keep it under wraps for now. You can declare the ‘good news’ to your family after another 3 or 4 weeks. When it comes to delivery time, you can always say it was a premature delivery. But no way are you going to abort this precious thing” I emphatically assured them of all my assistance in whatever way needed.
Two weeks ago they came to me… Just to show me the bundle of joy! A healthy, bubbly and absolutely adorable baby girl who is almost 6 months old now. I asked that boy… “And this is the little gift of your love that you wanted to abort. Right?” He said, “Never even mention it Sir, I can’t imagine how foolish it was! Can’t spend a day without her now”
Life after Death!
I have a hypochondriac client who is about the same age as me. He is so scared of something happening to him that it had become an obsession to him. One evening he came to my Clinic with his wife, who is a cheerful kind of girl. When I saw an obviously healthy looking couple, I asked “Which one of you is the patient?” She quipped, “No patient here. I have no problems and this is a Ghost!” He was now smiling. I was smiling too and asked, “Ghost?”
“Yes”… She shot back, “Yes Doctor, around mid-noon today, this man called me over the phone and told… Please take care of our kids and please forgive me for all the hurts I have caused to you. I am going to die now. I am feeling very week and my pulse is going down. Please take good care of my parents, your parents and also my brothers and sisters too… I tried calling him and his office several times since then and couldn’t get anywhere. All his brothers and friends too are out of station. Can you imagine my plight Doctor? And now about half an hour ago he came home. So I believe this is a Ghost”
The Ghost then opened up… “I woke up late today and didn’t take breakfast because I had a lot of work. I felt hungry by noon but couldn’t eat anything. There was nobody in the office today. All of them had gone out and hence I had no help. Then I really felt I was going to die. I was sweating and felt dizzy; my pulse was not felt and could not sit up. So I called her and told her. I felt sad for her. Then I fell asleep on the office sofa. I woke up about an hour ago and found out that I am still alive. What was wrong with me Doctor?”
I just told, “Nothing much… but just out of curiosity, may I ask… How is Life after Death?”