The Welfare Nursing Home of New York is famous for its high quality research into medical innovations and development. It has been around four years since Dr. Rajneesh is working here as a general physician upon successful completion of his post graduate level medical science examination in flying colors.
Receiving a sudden email from his dad, Dr. Rajneesh, was little surprised. Opening his inbox he read out the same. “Rajneesh, I am not well and fall into the deep trap of loneliness at home. As a doctor you are well aware about old-age problems. I want you to come back to Senai village in India and start your medical practice here. I have never wanted anything from you but today I’m expressing my earnest desire to spend the rest of the life with you at our ancestral village. I’m sure you won’t wish to see your father languishing alone at old age. I will wait for your reply” – Papa.
For 37-year-old Rajneesh, this was nothing less than a shock. He was about to get promoted to the hospital’s cardiology department within a few months from now. It was a time for the young doctor to soar higher in his career in New York. On the professional front, he was doing exceptionally well as a doctor. But he didn’t want to achieve any success at the cost of disappointing his ailing father. After all, he was the only son of his parents.
“No problem dad! In my entire life you haven’t demanded anything from me and worked so hard in your life to ensure that I become what I’m today. If you are saying something then I must pay heed to it”, said Rajneesh in a telephonic discussion with his dad the following night. “Yes, my son, I have full faith in you. I hope you won’t mind returning back to Senai, your ancestral village soon”, said Rajneesh’s dad over the telephone.
Next Morning, Rajneesh told his office that he won’t work there anymore with immediate effect due to some problems back home. Ms. Alice, Rajneesh’s supervisor was flabbergasted on hearing the same. Rajneesh was such a professional and highly efficient doctor that many of his office colleagues call him Midas because of his ability to cure patients at the earliest. Rajneesh was due for his promotion and no doubt Ms. Alice was surprised to hear what the young doctor was telling him. Rajneesh then stated to her the whole conversation carried last night with his father.
From inside Ms. Alice was a gentle soul and compassionate individual. Being a 4-year senior to Rajneesh, Ms. Alice readily accepted Rajneesh’s proposal and wished him very best for his new venture in India. Following night Rajneesh boarded an Air India flight for New York-Delhi.
Landing on to the New Delhi airport, Rajneesh realized it was a cool foggy morning. He hired a taxi for 2-hour journey to Senai. He is coming back to the village after a decade and lots of things transformed, but still the village still lacks the basic infrastructure to some extent.
Meanwhile, Rajneesh witnessed so many unique trees and landmarks in his taxi ride that he saw during his childhood. Actually, these were the very same things with which he grew up and rose from a sober Senai boy to ace New York doctor. The smell of the soil, narrow lanes, chirping of the birds and that spectacular view of sun rise, a village has so much to offer but people’s pursuit of money and fame often deprives them of the life’s simplicity and real happiness. After a long two hour ride into the bumpy roads, taxi halts at the doorstep of Rajneesh’s house.
Coming outside the taxi Rajneesh greeted his father waiving his hands who was waiting for him standing near the gate. Entering the house, Rajneesh’s childhood memories come alive. It was the same house where he grew up enjoying each moment of his childhood to the fullest. Entering the kitchen he remembered how his late mother used to prepare delicious carrot porridge (halwa) especially for him every Sunday. Unfortunately, Rajneesh lost her mother when he was only 15-year-old due to a fatal road accident. Seeing Rajneesh staring at his mother’s photograph for so long, his dad came near to him and embraced him with both hands. Wiping tears from his eyes, Rajneesh somehow controlled himself.
The father-son duo understands each other very well. Rajneesh’s father never stopped him from pursuing higher study or to go abroad. During Rajneesh’s absence he managed everything by himself. He would never put any pressure on his doctor son because Mr. Rajesh, a retired civil servant, is a man of principle and didn’t want to affect his son’s career due to home issues. But now when he is actually retired and has become aged, life doesn’t seem to be that much easier.
Following evening Rajneesh and his dad began a conversation. “Listen beta, I am already an old man. And it is becoming increasingly difficult for me to live the life all alone. You are well aware with old age health complications because you are already a qualified doctor yourself. I do consider myself guilty for curbing your success when it was about take off but I’m helpless.
Observing carefully what his father was saying, Rajneesh exclaimed “Oh daddy, first of all why you call yourself old. You are just 70-year-old. In New York many people even dance and throng to parties at this age. Even I was feeling alone in the New York, there were plenty of earning opportunities there but nothing comes between me and you. My very purpose of earning money is to make you feel more happy and proud. Without you, I’m nothing, in fact if I have come so far in my career it’s only because of my parent’s blessings and grace. I already missed mom’s love and now I don’t want to lose my dad’s affection”. Saying this, Rajneesh clasped his father.
Next morning, Rajneesh woke up to find the morning so natural. He didn’t witness something sweeter than this in the New York. A fresh morning in the village begins with the chirping of birds, cool breeze and a beautiful sun drenched in orange color. Running straight to his father downstairs, Rajneesh was quite pleased to see a big smile on his dad’s face. “Good Morning”, beta said Rajneesh’s dad before offering him with a daily newspaper. Morning followed afternoon and soon evening. The two had a good supper at night prepared by Rajneesh. Both of them thoroughly enjoyed the dinner together after a long-long time.
Chapter – III
Staring at his wall calendar, Rajneesh was quite surprised to find that a week has already passed in the village so fast. No doubt, New York is a dream city and whoever went there even once in life can’t forget the vibrant atmosphere of the USA’s most happening city. But for Rajneesh, priority was completely different. Being a qualified doctor, he knew how important is it to accompany the aged people and offer proper medical attention to them.
Rajneesh’s father, a retired IAS officer, has sacrificed his entire life to ensure his son get admitted to the best of medical institute in the US and didn’t have to worry about money during his sojourn in the US. Rajneesh loves his dad immensely and so as his dad.
Rajneesh didn’t even blink his eyes for a moment to return to Senai village several thousand kilometers away from the New York City at a single call from his dad while giving up his hefty salary package abroad to see his dad in a pleasant mood and live a dignified life. It was time for Rajneesh to behave responsibly and do something to make his dad proud of.
After a week, Rajneesh opened his new clinic. To utter dismay of everyone else around, he invited his father to inaugurate the clinic. Such was the charm of this young doctor, that if he wished he could have easily invited a local politician or an ace Bollywood celebrity for the inauguration event because it was for the first time that Senai village was getting its first multispecialty clinic to be led by highly successful and New York returned doctor.
But for Rajneesh, his dad was real hero. Nothing in life is as blissful as to make one’s parents proud. He requested his father to inaugurate the clinic speaking a few words. “In my entire life I had a dream to see my child doing something big for the motherland, though he had enormous options to taste success abroad; I purposely called him back home to make him realize that success is real when it’s shared. Until now, this village lacked a multi specialty clinic and today I’m really very glad and satisfied to see my son taking the first step to build a healthy nation while utilizing his medical expertise” Mr. Rajesh stated to the local gathering of the crowd and media after the inauguration. Standing next to his father, Dr. Rajneesh realized that whatever his father said is only the beginning and there is still a long way ahead.
Rajneesh is now the talk of the village for his highly efficient way of handling even the critical cases at ease. For Villagers, he was certainly a messiah not only because of his immense medical knowledge and expertise but for his relentless moral and monetary support to the poor and hapless patients and their families. There was magic in the way Rajneesh treated his patients at the clinic. More than ninety percent of the patients got cured after their first appointment with him. In a way, Dr. Rajneesh was repeating the same success story for which he was widely popular in the New York.
Rajneesh was now definitely living a dream, the one that his father saw about him. It doesn’t matter whether he would earn million dollars or more, whether he receives Nobel Prize for his medical research or not, or even leading the Welfare Nursing Home in the New York ever in his life. Because Rajneesh was receiving much more than that – the contentment of adding joy to people’s life all around.
Rajneesh was feeling self satisfied as well as content to see his 70-year-old dad enjoying quality time with him. It was even more heartening for Rajneesh to find that his dad didn’t fall prey to the gruesome days of loneliness that several old people face in the later ages of their lifetime. An old age is not a misery in itself but the way one’s own children treat their aged parents and throw them into the dark side of loneliness while focusing on only one’s own self-development is definitely a serious issue to ponder over.
Dr. Rajneesh was damn sure that if this is not what success is all about, then he is certainly not the one to run after it. Making one’s ancestral village proud and giving a new life to poor patients was certainly much more motivating than earning million bucks overseas.
The first sign of a successful man is his behavior towards others and ill fated people. Rajneesh learnt the real face of human misery and poverty at the village itself. No doubt, villagers were not even half of that much affluent as the Americans in the New York City. Certainly, Rajneesh could have easily lived a posh and aristocratic life there or at any other developed parts of the world without having an idea of even how appalling the life of the poor and destitute can be. But instead Rajneesh chose the rough path, contributing his effort and expertise to a healthy nation in whatever way he can.
In fact, Rajneesh bought so many things that money can’t in a very short span of time at the village. His affection towards his father and helping him live a long life without Alzheimer’s disease or depression topping the list. Rajneesh gave the finest of medical care to his father to ensure that his father stays disease free and in good health as much as possible. Rajneesh ensured that his father takes all medicines on time and proper rest while he managed all the household work. Considering these things in mind, Rajneesh did his medical practice shift wise in short intervals to spend more time with his Dad.
The second thing that Rajneesh learnt at the village was the fact there are lots of challenges in an underdeveloped parts of the world than big towns or metropolis. In the village, Rajneesh had to deal with several health issues of the patients alongside poverty and sanitation for which many parts of south Asia is globally susceptible to. Rajneesh accepted each challenge and never ran from his responsibility. He treated many of his patients without any fee and even built toilets for several poor families without charging any fee. For Rajneesh, saving one’s life and raising the standard of the living of the poor people was more important than earning money or climbing the success ladder – Something that was never taught to him his institutes in the US while perusing higher studies.
In a world which is full of self-centered egoistic people it makes a sense to be different but not indifferent. Rajneesh experienced that the quality of life is far better in the New York, but when it comes to adding happiness to someone’s life or improving a person’s lifestyle then working at village is far more satisfying and self-rewarding because one has to start from the scratch as village even lacks the basic social and health infrastructure necessary for a healthy living.
One evening, as the dad-son duo was having friendly conversation regarding how Rajneesh is set to transform an underdeveloped village into a healthier one? Rajneesh said, “Frankly speaking Dad, in my entire 37 years I have not find so much time and motivation to see life so closely as I am seeing it now. In my entire career in New York I learnt that several of my patients caught diseases due to their extreme wealth and aristocracy while in India people even suffer for their daily meals. In India, many people fall prey to risky diseases due to lack of basic cleanliness, clothes, awareness and quality food which every citizen of the country is entitled to. I have realized that money can’t buy everything. To buy those moments of self achievement that I feel while making others happy, I love to stay at this village along with my dad forever”.