This city has taken what I had …my pride but returned to me something I had lost…respect for life.
My love for bikes had compelled me to take a joy ride on a junior’s bike. Negligence of the municipal authorities coupled with my overconfidence made me lose control of the machine and sent me flying in to barbed wires which not only lacerated my face but also tore into my entire upper body.
My first reaction was shock. I felt no pain but remember a nagging fear. I knew immediately that I was gravely injured. I feared a permanent handicap more than death, in fact at that moment I wanted to die………….I was scared how my family would take it. As if to reassure myself, I pulled myself up and sat for a few seconds….people from all over rushed towards me. The traffic scrambled and stopped on the other side.
I got up on my feet and walked towards my car, which had been following me, sat on the rear seat and instructed my driver to drive straight to NanaVati Hospital.
Once in the hospital, I behaved the only way I army upbringing and taught to me…strong and controlling.
I didn’t wait for the stretcher I walked up, the operators saw me and asked me to remove all my clothes which had been torn to bits, I did as instructed and wore one of the robes provided to me.
After few minutes doctors asked me if I was feeling alright, I asked them if I can get one more robe as I was feeling very cold.
This is when I realized I had lost lot of blood……….
I was taken to OT………I kept asking God to take me ….I was trying a simpler route. I was operated on for more than 18 hours….I didn’t even realize when sun rose and set again.
It was in the night in the ICU when my wife came to meet me. Doctors had told her that I was very lucky because the jugular vein had been saved by just a millimeter, if it had been cut I would not have survived and bled to death on the spot. They also told her that I would not look the same again as my nose was completely chopped off and one side of the cheek was badly damaged.
I was not in a condition to speak, but I wrote and told my wife that I will be out of the ICU on my feet in 3 days’ time……which I did.
Post this I went through multiple reconstruction surgeries and walked out of the hospital and back to work in 21 days. I was aware that I didn’t look the same and still did not have a nose. In the corporate sector and the line of business I was in looks mattered. I faced many rejections, awkward looks and whispers as I walked into a client meeting. Many clients refused to work with me.
Being an Engineering graduate and a post graduate in management from NMIMS coupled with vast experience, I had believed that my credentials were enough for people to look past my disfigurement. It did not take me long to realize that I was wrong and my looks were making others uncomfortable .Before I left the hospital my doctor had warned me about the psychological effects of other’s reaction to my disfigurement. I decided that I will not let others affect me and decided to take the corporate sector head on and thus decided start my own venture Adiaki consultancy on both my son’s names. This proved to be even a greater challenge because now I had to go back and pitch for business for my own company which had no brand to back it up. It has been seven years since Adiaki was formed and it has grown reasonably though I have yet to make my millions.
Today I have no regrets and no complaints, this face even bagged me a film role and I was offered the role of Anna in Ram Gopal Verma’s Satya2. Being no actor, I cherished the experience and the opportunity this city gave me.
I think it is my upbringing in a defense household which gave me a diehard attitude and the strength to fight the crisis but I have always felt a strong presence of god around me whenever I was in doubt.
- Mumbaikar Vikram Singh – Director – Adiaki consultancy
Psst…Do check out the last few minutes of the film, Ship of Theseus, you will spot me there too!!
The OCOW team applauds your courage, Vikram! You are an inspiration to us and many of those who will read your story. Thank you for sharing with us and being the first person to mail us your write-up, when we thought of starting this Bloagazine.
Anyone interested in getting in touch with Vikram Singh, may do so on firstname.lastname@example.org