Bhaktivedanta Hospital – Bombay I?ve

February 16th, 2001

Bhaktivedanta Hospital – Bombay

I?ve never been in an operation theatre before. At least the doctor wears tilak and Srila Prabhupada’s soothing voice is in the background. The anaesthesiologist gives me a spinal tap. From the waste down I am complete numb to the extent that I have no awareness of where my legs are. I try to move them, but there’s absolutely no trace of a connection between my will and my kinesis. It is humbling. I am not even the controller of my basic functions.

I am conscious during the whole operation, but feel nothing. I didn’t know what to expect but I’m reasonably relaxed and able to chant. Toward the end, I hear the doctor singing along with Srila Prabhupada’s tape?a sure sign that things went well.

Post operation room: Sensation returns to my legs and so does the pain. It’s barely tolerable, but the thought of living like this for a day seems tortuous. No choice but to take shelter of the holy name.

The nurses wheel me to my room, then intravenous injections are administered and I am pumped with drugs. Pain is gone, but I must lie with my legs up without drinking or eating for the rest of the day. I don’t know what they gave me, but it must be quite powerful, because I lie on my back reading Bhakti-sandarbha for several hours, and don’t even sleep for the rest of the day.

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