Ignorance is Bliss
By Jyotsna Balasubramanian
Chartered Accountant, Bangalore
Foreword by Venkat
This is an incident narrated by Jyotsna from her personal experience and it brings out some amazing things to think about. These days, when information comes in so quick, our objective thought and composure are many times not ready to keep up to the pace. The mind is a great equipment to think but increasing the load of information may bring our emotions to unsettle our composure and the drive to action. Project managers are taught about the interplay and the needed ability to balance between Cost, Quality and Scope. If one of these goes beyond a limit, the other two are naturally impacted. On the same lines one can see the interplay between Wisdom, Knowledge and Will with each hinged on our plane of senses. Any of these when heavier than the other two, it can make us lose control, leading to bad and untimely decisions. A good balance among them, ensures things get the attention when needed and to the right amount.
Enjoy this recollection by Jyotsna written in lovely and thoughtful words to bring so many things to think, act and feel about!
A Chartered Accountant by profession, working mother of two children, finding peace in balancing – being a true Libran (Sun Sign), I enjoy the routine, singing and chanting and when time permits, like travelling around and learning about new cultures and languages.
Ignorance is Bliss
When you are studying to become a Chartered Accountant, the curriculum requires you to do three years of internship before giving the final exams. I had enrolled under a big firm for articleship that took most of the day time for work.
We were a family of four then. One of those days, my father and brother were out of town and I returned from work around 10 pm. My mom cooked me a hot meal – we sat together, talked, laughed, ate and went to bed around 10:45pm. It seemed like a perfect mother – daughter date. Around 11:30pm, she woke me up complaining of breathing difficulties. Being a diabetic, she has had bouts of restlessness and uneasiness before. I was quite experienced in handling her health conditions along with administering insulin injections periodically and so I could sense that this particular day was not like any other. About ten minutes had passed and she did not get better. I took her to the nearby 24-hour clinic. They injected some medicine for immediate relief and asked me to take her to Vijaya Health Center (a multi-specialty hospital in Chennai) immediately. It was midnight and I rode her to the hospital without a thought. Upon reaching the hospital, seeing her condition, the attendants got the stretcher and took her into the Critical Care Unit right away.
In any ICU or CCU, the patient alone goes in. Someone who laughed with me a couple of hours back – was now inside a critical care center and I was all by myself outside, not knowing what the problem was and no one at home to discuss with. I sat by the security, on the ground, pleading I would not disturb anyone and would go home early morning as I was expecting my dad to return.
It was 4:30 am the next day. Of all the other things, I had to go home to draw Kolam (Rangoli) as Amma would scold me if she came home and saw I did not do it. In the wee hours of dawn, I drove back to finish the morning rituals and narrate the story to my dad and bring him over to the hospital. During the day, the doctor examined my mother and observed many procedures and diagnosed that her heart had blockages of up to 90% and any delay in getting her the required medical attention would have proved fatal.
When I look back today, I realize that the courage came from ignorance – at a fairly young age of 19, I did not know it was 12 in the night, did not realize there was no one on the road and did not have the fear of rash truck drivers on the road. Ironically, I still hold the record of driving a patient with a heart attack on a two-wheeler to the hospital. Had I known she was a heart patient, I would not have dared asking her to be my pillion rider.
This episode has given the most valuable lesson of my life – to know only what is needed and not confuse oneself with a lot of information that is easily accessible. Sometimes, too much of information is dangerous!
Not to forget – doing one’s routine is therapeutic! Even when your mom is in the hospital, the morning chores of the house must carry on as usual!
By Jyotsna Balasubramanian