Showing posts from August, 2018

Do Not Ignore The Burns On Your Skin

            As a child, I was not afraid of fire. Every Chinese New Year, I had my fair share of playing with an assortment of fireworks with my sister and all the other children in the neighbourhood. Some were really fire hazardous such as firecrackers and the rocket.   During lantern festival, we would play with those paper lanterns and also had fun melting the mixture of the extra candles with fire.             During my youth, I had my fair share of burning rubbish at the garden of my home and also helped out with starting barbeques using inflammable materials.   Looking back, I was quite ignorant of the dangers of being burn and this applies to most Malaysians as well.   Most of us are not aware that burn injuries can be complicated and difficult to heal depending on the degree of the burn. I’m not in the medical field, so my sharing below is just a simple explanation of the severity of the burn for the ordinary folks to understand better.      In order to det

Children At The ICU

           When I was in the state of medical induced coma, my nightmares were terrible and vivid. In my nightmares, I was being constantly tortured by nurses and doctors. Some nightmares even repeated themselves, like a bad movie. Pain, anxiety, frustration and all of the negative emotions could be felt in my nightmares. Feeling confused and frightened, there was a desperation in me as I didn’t know where I was and wanted to go home or at least inform my parents that I will not be home so soon.   There were also silhouettes of dark figures outside the room, looking in, as if waiting for something to happen.             After regaining consciousness around 2 and a half months from the date of my accident, I remembered hearing and seeing children playing outside of my room in the ICU. In the middle of the night, usually after 9.00pm to nearly midnight. There was a particular boy, whom I suspected to be the leader of the group, a Chinese boy wearing glasses, who looks to be a

The Day I Came Out From The ICU

              I’ve stayed in the ICU for a long time that I was excited yet a bit worried about being transferred out from the ICU into the burn ward.               There were a few nurses in my room that morning, preparing me for the move. A male nurse said, “Eileyn, you are the Assistant Village Chief of the ICU”. I was staring at him in bewilderment, puzzled by his statement.              “Huh? What are you talking about?” I asked in my barely audible voice, unsure whether I had misheard him earlier. He then explained that the longest staying patient at the ICU was more than 4 months whereas I was there for the duration of nearly 4 months only.   Therefore, that makes me the 2 nd longest staying patient there. I honestly didn’t know how to react to this. Part of me felt amused by his statement but another part of me had the revelation that I am lucky to be alive.   For me, being in 2 nd place was already far too long to be in the ICU.            Later, another famili


           The first few memories that I had when I was conscious was that when I open my mouth, no voice came out. I couldn’t speak and my throat hurts. I could feel thick phlegm stuck at my throat, restricting my breathing. They had to use a suction machine and tubes to help suck out the phlegm from my throat through a hole that they puncture in the middle of my neck.               I could hardly move.   Muscles had wasted away due to lack of movement. They call it muscle atrophy.   I was bandaged from head to toe.            Once a while, a loud beeping sound could be heard from the left side of my room. I remembered my sister assuring me not to worry, and that the “beeping” means that the “medicine is finished”. Unbeknownst to me at that time, it was a multiple syringes pump dispenser for the different types of medications that were being administered to me through the right side of my neck.  There was no emergency button at the ICU for the patient to press on, to buzz the

The Dream

          A myriad of strange looking colourful patterns were above me. There were many beautiful colours that I was unfamiliar with. All this while, a light melodious song was being played in the background.  I have never beholden such a sight or hear such a tune before.  I was floating on air feeling free.   Suddenly, a loud voice spoke to me, "Come on, come on, take your responsibility!" .             Jolted out of my dreamy state, a sudden realisation hit me, "What am I doing? I need to find my bed", I told myself.             Lowering myself slowly, I felt like a spider suspended above the ceiling swinging on a big web.  As I slide down the web, the music sounded heavier and louder, akin to heavy metal or hard rock. F aces and images of famous dead people, appeared to me, many of whom I couldn’t recognise .   However, there were two faces that somewhat resembled Napoleon Bonaparte and Beethoven. I felt fascinated yet annoyed as this slew of images a

At The Hospital

       When the ambulance finally reached the hospital, I was rolled with a wheelchair to the emergency section. During admission, a lady at the registration asked some questions.            Having answered her questions, she then looked at me and said, “This hospital only accepts burn patients who are burnt 35% and below. Yours looks like 50% and above. I am sorry, we can’t accept you here”. Surprised by her statement, I asked, “Then where should I go?” She replied, “You can ask the ambulance to bring you to any hospital that you want. You can go to Lam Wah Ee Hospital or elsewhere”. Despite the pain and shock, I was lucky that I still had some clarity of mind. “If Penang General Hospital, the biggest hospital in Penang doesn’t want to accept me, which other private hospital would accept me?”, I asked her.   “I still want to be admitted here”, I insisted. Somehow, I instinctively felt that time would be of the essence and that I needed to be admitted as s

The Gas Explosion

           That night I woke up groggily, awaken ed by the smell of gas. In my dazed and groggy state, somehow there was a realisation that the strong smell was coming from the kitchen. My room, located just above the kitchen.  Rushing down, I headed towards the kitchen and proceeded to the gas stove.                         Trying to make sure that the knob on the stove was switched off; suddenly a spark ignited.  There was a loud deafening explosion. It happened in front of my face.   “I am going to die!” that was the thought that crossed my mind. As the horror of this realisation hits me, suddenly I felt something protecting me, some sort of a shield in front of me, especially on my face.            I fell back from the impact of the explosion. Glass and plates shattered. Things around me were melting from the heat. It felt really hot. Some shreds of glass cut my legs and hands. My clothes were burnt to ashes. After the explosion, everything suddenly became eerily da

Conclusion: Taking and Orwellian Leap by Avantika

We have come to the end of this series of articles on ‘I Need to Tell My Story’. You now have all the tools that you need to tell a story. You know what you need to do before you write the first word. You understand the difference between a biography, an autobiography, a memoir and fiction. You are aware of how to plan your story so that it flows from start to end and has all the elements in place to make it fantastic. I have no doubt that you’re all set to go. There is, however, one last part of the writing process I would like to share. It is a set of rules I learnt from an essay called ‘Politics and the English Language’ by George Orwell. I have summarised some of the most important points in his essay. Orwell starts with: ‘[Words like democracy] are often used in a consciously dishonest way. That is, the person who uses them has his own private definition, but allows his hearer to think he means something quite different. Statements like … The Soviet press is the freest in the wo

He's Coming!!

I have been told by experienced mothers that when the baby is coming, our body will signal to us to prepare for his/her coming.  Physically and sometimes in dreams. I have mothers who shared they dreamt of their baby’s birth, which  signaled  to them their baby is coming soon.  I had shared chronological dates with my friends last year, which I would reproduce as follows:-  1) Sep 7 - First dream: giving birth with sensation soft pushing the baby. Saw the baby staring at me and vice versa. I noticed an umbilical cord. 2) Sep 8 - noticed a slight menstrual cramp ( once a day) continuously happened for next few days until Sep 11 3) - Second dream: seeing my son crawling around with cloth diapers. Crying, and I picked him up to comfort him. Walking round with colourful diaper on his back 4) Sep 13 - Third dream: my tummy goes down flat. Feel my intestines going down. Feel a big pressure around vagina area. Feel like pushing....I even heard the word - "PUSH!" The se

The Last Excruciating Month

September 2017 The last month of my pregnancy was very challenging. Not only did I gain more weight, which was enough to make others think I  had  twins. I started experiencing negativity from people  who had misunderstandings  towards me.  I would try to limit myself from such people as I always find myself having  just  enough energy for myself and for my baby within. Anything further can really  tire  me out. Any expressed negativity would  cause  me to feel nauseous, headaches and so forth.  I had read of  complaints  that some people were not understanding towards pregnant women. The dangers of stressed- out- pregnancy. I did not understand what that meant until I experienced it myself.  I became very concerned when my blood pressure started to be affected. That never happened before during the previous months. The constant pressure from these group of negative people towards me were relentless and unforgiving. I could not help but wonder why they cannot wa