The Second Side Of The Coin
The Second Side Of The Coin11 mins 219 11 mins 219
Before I introduce myself, start your imagination. I'm short, heavy and fatso, thirty years and married with two sons. I'm just an ordinary man staying in an apartment in a cosmopolitan city, commuting eighty kilometers up and down to office. My world begins at six a.m. and ends at twelve p.m. By now, I've bored fifty percent of the readers!!! Judging too quickly, I must say, No one wants to know the reality, as we live in a fancy world.This story about me, is an eye opener, to an incident which shook my convenient lifestyle to actually discover what the world looks from a second side of the coin.
It was just another Saturday, with my limited resources, I've often decided to shut myself down at home and pretend to do the household chores during the weekends.It was evening and I successfully killed my Saturday brutally by being careless about everything at home followed by great afternoon sleep, waking up late, and checking my mobile. Since, it was a weekend, I mostly spend my time unsuccessfully on social entertainment and useless activities, often cribbing about missing work-life balance.
I received a whatsapp message from one of my friends asking if I would join him for a drink. As a committed man, edging for a good name among the society, I declined his offer and started watching the cartoons along with my sons. Being brought up in a lower middle class family, I never fancied any night out drinks with friends or walk around the aisle in my community fearing some stranger neighbor would provoke my introvert mind in a plausible conversation about my family and work, in which I was average skilled. I was over-weight with a medical condition. "My family is the history of heart diseases", and is the only property I inherited. My lifestyle was perfect, with too much of oily and salted foods. Over a while, I asserted that all men followed such lifestyle and I was proud to be one! My wife shouted dinner is ready, and there you go, I was the first one to reach the table and stare at others to arrive. Nine p.m. dinner on a Saturday with family, watching a movie is just rooted for us. I never bothered to care how many paranthas I ate while watching the television. May be, it was my fifth aloo-gobi parantha, I gave a disgusting burp and said, I'll have one more last and continued watching. Something was numbing my fingers since morning, but, I was more focused on the television thriller. I was sweating profusely. My hands are still on the half parantha which was tearing up from its shape to be chewed by me. My mind always says, eat less, while my heart says, one-life, eat as much as you want. I'm now struggling with my left hand holding the glass of water and the right hand with holding the food, unable to think, sweat all over my face. I was confused.
The next morning I opened my eyes, I see a nurse holding my left hand and checking for my invisible veins covered by my protected layer of extra fat. I sensed a cannula on my right hand. I was unable to talk. Something was choking me. It was early morning, I heard the birds chirping and bells ringing in the nearby temple. Many things were running in my mind and most of all, I was feeling very hungry. I had a transparent tube inside my mouth and I was actually sucking the air through my mouth. I waited patiently, till I see someone, probably my family members instead of panicking everyone. I was pretty sure, I made it to a heart attack, as I belong to the unsaturated fats eating members of the fraternity who gave me a fair share of their unhealthy eating habits. It was more uncomfortable sleeping on the hospital bed, and my back itching and burning. I managed to ask nurse to incline my bed, for which, she agreed and moved towards my legs and started spinning the lever in anti-clock wise directly, with a weird look at me. I spotted my friend Shaheem and he was waiting for me to call him. I nodded my head and he understood. Shaheem has been my family friends since we were kids and he was the only person I met outside.
I hated the thick straw inside my mouth as I felt, my saliva was tasteless and I'm very hungry and looking at him, I raised my left eyebrow and sighed to explain to me what happened. Shaheem was over talkative most of the times, and he felt sad faced for me. I was expecting an answer from that idiot! He was asking me to sleep and get well soon. There was no point asking, as I was low in energy and very hungry. I felt I lost ten kilos of weight with that hunger and was ready to eat anything crawling, swimming, flying or walking, to satisfy my palates. Damn, I thought, and slept inclined on the bed.
It was around 5 minutes after I slept, the nurse arrived with a plate idly and coconut chutney, and woke me up. I had a good power nap and equally irritated for losing the good sleep. I was wondering how will the two idli's will make me survive for another ten to fifteen minutes of the day. she leaned over my legs and started to release the level clockwise, to make me lie down straight. she then came forward and asked me if I was able to hear anything, for which I nodded the head and she understood.she then asked me to open my mouth and I did exactly what she said and She started pulling the tube slowly from my mouth. It was way short than what I expected to feel. I had to wash my mouth and gargle to feel better. She offered me the idly and I started eating it. I was now very weak. I sighed at Shaheem, who was sitting around and he held my plate and I managed to concentrate more on the idly. He then said. Its been two days, you ate.I was startled. and he leaned forward and said, your wife left you at home, and he came running and rushed me to hospital. I thought, wait, she left me and went to her parents place, and I'm at hospital and she did not even care to look at me? I was thinking about that night, I should have skipped the fifth parantha. The green chilly pickle was very spicy. It gave a heart attack to me. But I was no stranger to spicy food. That became a habit. Something went bad. My wife left me. She took the kids? They are young, they dont remember a thing. How about my parents? If they were informed, I had to bear the brunt of my mother's weeping infront of everyone. That're more embarassing, than my wife leaving. I can manage the latter, the former just screws up my day.
The doctor arrived after eleven o clock in the morning. I was buried with the thoughts running around my head. He wished me good morning and asked how I felt.
"I'm ok," I whispered.
Like I guessed, it was a mild heart attack and I was brought to the hospital on time. The doctor was not pleased to listen to my story of hereditary nor he was amused to hear about my eating habits. I was over there for a couple of days. None came to visit me, except Shaheem, who used to get his laptop and work from hospital. He was very kind to listen to my stories and often related my life with his dead cousin or someone dead living like me. Over the next weekend, I was at home.
I unlocked my house, Shaheeem, dropped my week long required clothes and medicines and sat on the sofa. He came up with an exciting stories everyday. He was blabbering something which was going over my head and I was constantly thinking of why the house is still empty. My futile methods to call my wife and she blocked my phone number made some sense to me. I was a loser. I went into the kitchen, I spotted the fungi-spreading on the parantha which was packed in the casserole. I threw it in the kitchen sink. It was me eventually to clean it.
Shaheem brought me a curd rice and asked me to eat while he was leaving. I thanked God for making him move out of house, as I was getting more uncomfortable and was unable to get back to the thoughts of what will happen to me. This moved for a while. I eventually picked up without anyone's help. I was a tough fight. I approached my wife several times during the days and she never wanted to come back to me. She had her own reasons. My pity and shame was not helping me anymore. I wanted a break, and visit a temple.
I packed my bags, went for a short pilgrimage set by IRCTC. It was a 3 day darshan and I met new people. After I came back home, I sat on the sofa and I realized I needed a change. But what has to change?
I walked to the nearby Gym and paid a half-yearly subscription. The guy was not a coach, but a handsome young man, with a fit body, laugh my over-confidence when I paid my half-yearly subscription, and asked me to come the next day at 5AM. I nodded my head and walked back home. I was confused If I happened to pay him the money realizing I will laze myself and skip going. But something special was there in him. I wanted to be trained.
Next morning, I woke up at 4:30 AM. I freshened up myself and rode to the place. I waited for 30 more mins, the gym is not opened!! I wondered if he took my money and ran away.
I went back home and started watching TV. It was 7am, I felt, I should try again. I started walking, and I heard the music from the gym 50 meters ahead. I was relived. I went inside, signed the book and met him.
I was completely out of shape with a big belly, double chin and curly hair. He smiled at me and said, " If you come regularly, you can reduce". I was fascinated by the thought. He went on explaining me more, but I was more tempted to lift the weights on the day one and appear a body builder. My initial days were strength and cardio sessions. I lost weight and sweat. I skipped eating rice after 6PM. I reduced weight drastically. I was being complemented by people around me.I noticed my apartment conducts some health camps for free, which I never went before and now I checked my health stats for free. I befriended so many people, kids, young men, older men and few ladies in the apartment. Everytime I met a guy, they used to talk about how I reduced my weight. I felt odd and even at the same time. This encouraged me even more. I was weighing around 97 kilos, and I wanted to reduce to map my BMI. I was more focused on the Gym. I befriended many people there. The music became my choice of songs. Often some patrons used to fight with me over the loud and fast music, I used to win over, due to my progress. I am now set as an example in the gym. My coach referred me to his new clients, and often narrated how my transformation was. This further pushed my ego and confidence. Once a loser, and now, I'm loving this.
Then came the keto diet, HIIT, articles on runnings, spending money on running apparel.I lost my weight, gained new friends, found a new life.I left eating the fat food and started living the cooked veggie life. Lean milk and Yogurt. More of proteins and less carbs. I often bored my friends with the knowledge on the food facts, but it was inspiring them too. Slowly , I showed my family, that I care for them and showed my transformation. Things started to fall back in place. From being so boring and hopeless, I registed myself in many activities and became admin of 20 whatsapp groups related to activties. I became productive at work and extrovert at life. My weekend morning never pretended to be at home, instead, I used to run along with my sunday running club and often felt so accomplished with long distance running. Saturday evenings are to be with friends, I started drinking more beer with them, associated with many social clubs. Sundays were strictly for family, helping my wife and kids with their homework. I extended my hours so much, I had a good work-life balance and slept for 7 hours a day. I've become more productive, smart and more active. Its been 5 years, I am still short though, but now lean, happily married and a better father. This is the second side of my coin!