Monday, September 13, 2010

Aspiring to Become a Novelist


Many friends have suggested that I write a novel to educate the public on what I've been through. After giving it a lot of thoughts, I finally sat down and tried to write something. I'm proud to say that I've written about 60 pages of the it already. I still have a long way to go. But I hope to finish it one fine day and able to declare myself a novelist...hahaha... Please pray for that to happen, folks! I'd like to share a small but meaningful partof what I've written with you. Comments are greatly appreciated.

True to his words, Fahmi got there before 9.00 am. She was ready to go home for the weekend. Since there was no radiotherapy during weekends, the doctors agreed to let her go home. Fahmi took her bags and off they went. Penang General Hospital had always been busy with patients, nurses, doctors, visitors coming and going. The parking lots were almost always full. So, they had to make a long walk to the car because Fahmi had to park the car at the very end of the hospital compound. The children were so happy to see her, especially Shumael. Shumael was a bit shocked when he saw her because her chin and neck area looked slightly brownish because by then she already had 5 zaps of radiation. That night, she could not sleep. She could feel her phlegm filling her throat.

She had to get up at least twice to clear her throat of the phlegm. This was to be expected. The radiation had messed up the salivary gland which resulted in dry mouth. Her saliva became thick. She could not swallow the phlegm because it was so thick that it stuck to the throat like glue.
“Are you okay, love? Do you need anything?” She was coughing violently. Fahmi rubbed her back gently. God, she looked and felt so fragile that he was worried that he might hurt her. He could feel her back bone. Saffiya just nodded. He thought of the days when she was just out of the ICU. That was when the after effect of general anaesthesia started affecting her respiratory tract. There was a lot of phlegm and she was coughing and coughing trying to clear her throat but it was difficult because phlegm was too thick. So, the nurse had to suck the phlegm out using a suction machine. A straw like tube was inserted into the trachy hole through her throat into the trachea. And she would cough painfully until tears streamed down her cheeks. It was heart wrenching to watch. But it had to be done or she would not be able to breathe because the phlegm would block the windpipe.

But here, in their house, without the suction machine, the only way for her to get rid of it, was to use a piece of tissue wrapped around her forefinger and stick it into her mouth until it touched the phlegm. Then, she pulled out the tissue along with the phlegm that stuck to the tissue. This had become a nightly ritual for weeks and weeks after that. After her throat was clear, she took Fahmi's hand and kissed it and they held each other well into the night, wishing that morning would never come.