Another Friday, the 6th one without Fasih.
I woke up today to see on twitter Dr. Faheem Younus tweet that the phase 3 trial of Actemra has proven to be of ‘no benefit’. And the treatment has been abandoned.
Before this, there was a study that found Remdesivir Is not the right antiviral for COVID 19.
My heart sank. These were the two drugs Fasih had been given as WHO protocol for his management in ICU. We knew they were in phase 3 trials then. But we pinned big hopes on them, and felt fortunate to have procured them easily.
I began to wonder, what would be Fasih’s reaction if he was still there, following as he did, all the latest developments of COVID.
He wouldn’t be bitter or angry, but would say, “This is an emerging science. And we have to accept it.”
I know he discussed his own investigations, ECGs and Xrays with the ICU Consultant, bravely and valiantly.
He would wave and make thumbs up to the visitors who saw him from the window. To us he messaged every few hours, “All good here, I hope you are doing well too.”
Yesterday my sister in law told on phone, her son & his nephew Kabeer keeps watching Fasih’s photos on FB and keeps muttering to himself, ” Bobby Chachu hadd ker dee aap ney. Aisa kya tha, theek thaak tou the aap.”
There is no one who doesnt say, “Fasih is a loss to us all, not just to his family.”
I am not as generous and big-hearted like Fasih. I do get angry. And especially after knowing that none of these hopefuls in phase 3 trials worked for him, and will not work for anyone else either. Why did his ‘always lucky’ fate ditched him this time?
And then the mysterious drop in COVID cases in Pakistan is a welcome sign. We all have many more loved ones who are at risk, and this reduction will save many lives. But then, did this spike after Eid came only to take Fasih away? It hurts a big deal.
May no one has to go through what we as his wife, sister daughter, son and other loved ones are going through.
I know our pain is not the only pain, many have gone through, and many will go through. And though people console, “We all have to go one day”, it hardly brings any consolation.
Wasn’t he supposed to nurture and grow Taj Consultants Clinics that he created from his sweat and blood? He had miles and years to go to do more against TB, against Smoking, and against all the mess around, for which he kept fighting. And he loved all this.
He wanted to grow old seeing patients, treating them, talking to them, giving them advice about thir lifestyles, about giving back. He wanted all his retired friends to stop brooding and come out and join volunteer free clinics for the poor. He said almost every other day, “There is so much scope to do god work in Pakistan.”
His sudden dissociation from all this still doesnt make sense to me. Maybe he is around and watching us do all that he did. But he wanted to do it all by himself. Asking for help was not his personality. Nothing makes sense at times. Most of the times, in fact.
All I hope, that I am wrong, and he is now in a happier place than he was here. I hope he gets to see needy patients up there too. He will love it and he did not like doing nothing.
Maqdoor ho to Khaak se poochhoo’N ki ae la’eem
Tu ne woh ganj’ha-e-giraaN-maayah kya kiye
مقدور ہو تو خاک سے پوچھوں کہ اے لئیم
تو نے وہ گنجہاۓ گراں مایہ کیا کیے
मक़दूर हो तो ख़ाक से पूछूं कि ऎ लईम
तू ने वह गनजहा-ए गिरां-मायह क्या किये
If I ever get an opportunity, I would ask earth, “Oh hoarder,
what did you do with all the precious treasures that were entrusted to you?”