I realized I was gaining consciousness when I started to hear an incoherent voice beside me. At first, I couldn’t make out who it was talking to or what the person was saying but then slowly when the fog in my brain cleared, I could make sense of everything around me.
It was my dad’s voice. He was talking about his day casually like we used to converse. I don’t remember the last time we spent time together. I tried to open my eyes to respond, but it felt so heavy and the dull ache all over my skull didn’t help me either. A moan escaped from me, and I guess that made him notice me.
“Deva! Deva! Can you hear me? It’s Dad.” I heard my dad trying to gain my attention, calling my name nervously, or was it excitement? I tried to lift my hand hoping to let him know that I did hear him since I couldn’t open my eyes yet but I don’t know if it worked. I couldn’t feel my hand or my body except for some tingling sensation all over.
With so much effort, I opened my eyes only to close them again due to sudden exposure to light. It took me a minute to accommodate the light and the sounds around me. I kept hearing a beeping sound somewhere above my head. Once my vision cleared, I saw my dad standing beside me and calling my name with an expectant look.
I tried to move my lips but then I realized there was a tube entering my mouth which made me uncomfortable. I grimaced and started to move uncomfortably. As time passed, the sensation all over my body returned slowly. By then I could lift and move my fingers on my limb.
“It’s okay, Deva. Don’t move. I am going to call the doctor. Don’t worry.” My dad assured me with a warm smile and walked away from me. As he did, I saw my brother coming in from somewhere and watched me with a smile.
In an hour or so, all the tubes from my body were removed, and I was left alone with my dad and my brother after the doctor did a full check-up and asked some questions. My movements were restricted a bit but the doctor assured me that it was quite normal for the patient who has been in the bed for so long and told me that I would be moving around like before in no time with the help of some physiotherapy. Overall, the doctor and my family were happy that I was awake and responding well.
My brother, Sam, and my dad stayed with me all day after that. They were watching me like some kind of miracle happened and took care of me like I was brittle. I knew that was how you were supposed to take care of a patient with a mild brain haemorrhage and multiple fractures all over the body but it felt like there was something more than that.
“So how long have I been out?” I asked my father when we were finally left alone in our hospital room. I was really curious about something.
Earlier, when my father was talking with the doctor outside the room, I got bored and read my case sheet that was kept on the bedside table. As I said I had a hemorrhage and multiple fractures but I didn’t see any bandages or cast on my body. For a fact, I felt alright except for the stiffness in my body. Whenever I tried to ask my doctor about it, he tried to evade it saying something else, assured me that we would talk all about it eventually, and asked me to take a rest as much as I could.
Once I asked the question, my father and my brother looked at each other meaningfully. I knew that there was something that I didn’t know yet, and that made me nervous because I remembered the moments just before I lost consciousness vividly. I could still feel the force of the impact of the truck on our car when I closed my eyes.
“Dad, is everything ok? Is Aryan alright?” I asked them getting more nervous by the looks of them. They both looked at each other again but this time in confusion.
And then I remembered something else. ’The baby!’ “Dad, is the baby okay? What happened to the baby? I was… I was bleeding.” I asked them looking helpless. It was frustrating when they stood there with confused looks without answering my questions.
“Just tell me something!” I yelled. “How long have I been out? How many days?”
“Days?” my brother finally spoke. “You were in a coma for seven years, Deva.” He said hesitantly.
My eyes darted to my dad and to my brother trying to make sense of what he said. I was expecting one of them to smirk and tell me it was a prank. “What do you mean seven years? You are kidding right, Sam?” I chuckled nervously. “Tell me you are kidding because this is not funny,” I told him.
“Just tell me what date is today?” I asked him when he stayed quiet.
“It’s the 9th of February 2022.” He said and I sighed in relief. Although I was unconscious for a month, give or take, it was better than hearing for seven years.
“I was out for a month, huh?” I mumbled to myself.
“How did you bring me from Malaysia? Where is Aryan?” I asked them.
My father and my brother stood there like a statue, unmoving with confusion etched on their faces. “I better call the doctor.” My father informed, as a matter of fact, and walked out of the room. “take care of her.” He added pointing at my brother before he left.
“Deva, What are you talking about?” my brother asked me as he approached the bed and took a seat in front of me. “What do you mean how we brought you from Malaysia? You’ve never been to Malaysia and you… you don’t even have a passport.” my brother replied.
It was my turn to be confused. I blinked my eyes in confusion as he took my hand in his hands slowly.
“You were angry when Dad refused to send you to the Philippines for college. You ran out of the house crying and you got into an accident. A car hit you when you crossed the road without looking. Remember?” He slowly but carefully explained.
“But… But that was… seven years ago.” I said as fear crept through my body. I didn’t want to believe what he was saying, but part of me believed my brother without me knowing because of the look he gave me and it was terrifying.
“Exactly.” He replied. “You were badly injured and have been in a coma ever since.”
“No… No way… you are lying.” I said pulling my hand out of his harshly. Tears trickled down my cheeks as part of me considered the possibility of it. Meanwhile, my father entered the room with the doctor and a nurse.
“What did you say to her?” my father scolded my brother when he saw me crying.
If what they were saying was true, if I was in a coma for seven years then what are those seven years of memories in my head? I remember every day since the moment I boarded the plane to the Philippines. I looked at all the people standing around me helplessly, hoping that someone would say what my brother said was a lie.
“What was the last thing you remember, Deva?” the doctor asked me noticing my inner struggle.
“I … I was in Malaysia… with Aryan.” I stuttered as I was anxious and talking at the same time I was remembering. “We… We were happy and… and I was pregnant… I was pregnant but then I started bleeding. Aryan was taking me to the hospital and then… and then a big truck drove right into us.” I closed my eyes as I relived the moment again. “I was in pain and I could smell petrol. I saw Aryan on the driver’s seat, there was blood all over him and he was unconscious.” My voice croaked and tears escaped my eyes when I remembered.
“Aryan… Where is he? Is he alright?” I asked them opening my eyes.
“Who is Aryan, Deva?” the doctor asked me casually, and that irked me.
“Aryan, the… the one who was with me when the accident happened,” I said in agitation. When no one did anything except look at each other, it made me scared.
“I need to see him. I need to see if he is okay.” talking to myself I tried to get down from my bed but my legs gave away. Thankfully my brother caught me and helped me to sit back asking me to slow down.
“And… And… and the baby… is my baby okay?” I asked them rubbing my stomach gently. I already knew it was a long shot as I was bleeding profusely when we were on the way to the hospital but a mother could hope, right?
“What baby, Deva?” My father spoke this time. “Calm down, Ava. You are scaring us,” he said as his voice croaked.
“No Dad, I remember… I remember everything. Let me go… let me see him.” I pushed my brother away and tried to move frantically.
The doctor noticed that I was getting frantic and signalled the nurse to hold me. The nurse and my brother on either side held me pinning me down on the bed.
“Let me go, Dad... please. Let me see him once.” I begged, helplessly kicking my legs as I broke into tears. My father held my legs and they tried their best to keep me down.
“Sedate her.” The doctor ordered the nurse. “This is not good for her. At this rate, she might even seizure. She is still recovering from the brain haemorrhage.” He informed my dad and my dad nodded his head listening, as his eyes welled up to the brim watching me struggle.
With my dad and brother’s help, the nurse managed to inject the drug into my IV line. Within minutes I started to feel the effect, I felt my body getting tired and my eyes drooped involuntarily.
“Aryan…” That was the last thing I could remember saying before everything went black.
Enjoy Reading -T