Nihira looked at Dr.Anuj in disbelief. When she walked into the clinic in the morning, she was so sure her reports would be negative, but it was not. How could it be? She was a model and she took very good care of herself. During her yearly checkup, she had casually mentioned to the doctor about the stomach cramps. The doctor examined her and was instantly suspicious. He had hidden his fears well from her and told her to come back for a battery of tests and samples. They had sent her samples for biopsy and the reports confirmed the doctor's worst fears. In front of him right now, sat a stunningly pretty girl with lovely eyes and silky smooth hair, whose body was slowly getting eaten up by cancer.
Anuj almost wanted to reach out to her and hug her, but since it was against the protocol, he remained where he was, gently telling her what lay ahead, gave her details of chemotherapy and told her in a calm voice that they were going to fight this, come what may and get cancer out of her system.
6 months later, of extremely painful treatment and being in and out of the hospital, fighting cancer alone, she lay on the hospital bed. Pale, large eyes and bald. All her hair that she had loved, nourished and took pride in, was gone. Each morning, she would wake up with locks of hair on the pillow and weep. Finally she had to get it shaved. It was the day after that she had shaved it all off, that she noticed that the doctor had awesome shoulder length hair. She looked at it and felt so bitter about her situation. With her hair gone, she somehow felt less of a woman.
But, she withstood all her pain with a brave face, took the doctor's advice and believed that she would survive this. She took a break from work, told her parents and friends that she was going overseas for an assignment and would remain in touch with them through phone. She bore it all alone, informing her doctor that she would not have any visitors.
And now, it was done. She had won the battle after two very painful surgeries and almost half her stomach removed. the doctor walked in cheerfully that day to her room and told her she was going to be alright. She told him, that she already knew that, because he was so good and it was by his skill and kindness that she was on her path to recovery. Dr.Anuj looked at her then and asked her, if she would like to have some tea with him. She touched her bald hear, and reluctantly agreed. He said, he would take her out the next day and he promised her that it would be a great time for both of them. She was perplexed by his remark and was kept awake by his thoughts. All these days, she had seen him as her doctor, as her ray of hope. Today, she looked at him differently, as a friend, as her only companion who helped her fight this terrible disease, or maybe someone more, she was not sure.
He came for his rounds the next day, all clean shaven and with an army haircut. She looked startled by his striking looks. But what she saw and liked more was the kindness that shone in his eyes. "Good morning", he called out cheerily and she asked him why he looked so happy and so different. He laughed and said, that he had bought her a present and handed a brightly packed cover. As she tore it open, and saw the gift, her cheeks became wet with her tears. He had cut his hair, made a lovely wig out of it for her! He looked at her, grinned and helped her try it out. She looked so cute, even better than her original straight silky hair. She looked up to him and said, "This is the best thing anyone has ever done for me. How do I ever thank you?". He knelt on the ground with a ring on his hand, held out to her and said "Just say Yes Nihira!".