Dr Aarif calls early morning to set an approximate time for the afternoon saying he wishes to provide assistance to the best of his capability…
At 2:30 PM
I am introduced to a hospitable and skilled nurse by the name of Janet or sister Janet as nurses are usually addressed.
Sister Janet this is our patient Khadeeja and Khadeeja – Sister Janet was even more excited to come than me 😂
We greet and familiarize ourselves with each other. I mention that I drank rehidrate and ate ajwaa which suppose to boost low blood pressure so hopefully the veins might be more prominent.
(When discussing jet fuel which is a vitamin mixture consisting of B12, B complex and thiamine, Dr mentions – soaking dates in water overnight and drinking it the next morning also serves as a jet fuel in itself)
Sister Janet then begins a search
Aareef haii see her veins
Skin is sooo hard Aareef
Seestaa why your skin is so hard? I have to push the needle through, it doesn’t slide in quickly (skin supple reduction occurs with dehydration)
Seestaa do you have low blood?
Yoh yoh yoh
As she attempts site one – no backflow
Site two – no backflow
Site three – no backflow
I am so sorry, I don’t ever poke patients more than twice. Sorrryyy seestaa.
At the fourth attempt she gains access into a fine vein below the left thumb with a 22G needle
Phew. Difficult one. Yohhhhh
She exclaims in surprise not quite expecting the first three to be ineffective.
If it’s out we’ll come back again she says while glancing towards Dr Aarif for affirmation
He confirms with surety: Yeah we’ll come again.
We then discuss a few matters relating to neurosurgeons and a suggestive sympathectomy for certain Dysautonomias.
In conclusion before walking out Dr says: It must be comforting to know there are people abroad who specialize and provide information pertaining to your condition. Then commenting on the charm decorating my IV stand:
So here I see you have hope, now you have a little more than that Insha-Allah
Subhanallah! After they leave I sit spellbound impressed with his readiness to collaborate with us and work according to our requests in the manner prof wants my infusions coordinated.
Our second meeting where more outstanding qualities mirror from his assistance reassert him being a keeper and I decide not to hunt elsewhere. A person of amiable character should be allowed the opportunity and I don’t mind if he doesn’t insert the needle himself because he is making the effort and taking out special time from their work schedules to bring Sister Janet home for me and then return back to hospital.
Insha-Allah we will make good headway and succeed with favorable results that will not be solely for myself but others around who can also benefit from his unique medical capabilities, understanding and care.
ما شاء الله لا حول و لا قوة إلا بالله العلي العظيم
اللهم لا حسد
The blotches of discouragement hazing over my lens clear and I view the preceding pandemonium as a turning tide of time towards new openings where a fairly new Dr is being enlightened.
The physical and emotional distress became a means of Dysautonomia gaining more exposure and in the painful process of change on the far side of my comfort zone, new avenues opened. Had Salmaan stayed on course, the opportunity of further clinician education would have remained otherwise closed.
So at the end of all disarray and dismay, a magical light spans over my world and our hearts are cheered by his aid.
Now I can only hope he doesn’t give up on me 🤭 Sometimes I’m slightly scared to rejoice over a triumph of this nature because Allah forbid the same happiness from crumbling into nothingness at at a later time.
Being human I guess we’re afraid to face rebounding dejection so victories become a strange mixture of emotion where you are unbelievably thrilled to recieve proper care yet a small part of you is unsure being too overjoyed lest it leads to a dashing of hopes.
We maintain unwavering حسن الظن بالله but the above illustration is only to explain how medical trauma messes with one’s mind. To the ears of someone who has not traversed this journey it probably sounds insane but only the ones who are in your club get what goes on in your brain.
Two days after the infusions terminate I send a little report and commence the message by texting:
“Assalaamu alaikum Dr” – followed by a note of feedback.
He responds accordingly, stating at the end: Also, please call me Aarif.
I marvel again at the humility of not wanting to be called by a hard-earned doctrate title and my heart overflows with gratitude for being bestowed with three doctors of excellence who’s hearts Allah specifically selected to be carriers of kindness and compassion.
Second being prof who confirms the Port-A-Cath consult for thirteen days later…