I was away; was banned from thinking. My heart was banned from beating. The only purpose it was allowed was to circulate blood in my machine like organs… with no emotions, with no feelings and hopeless.
I was having my final year MBBS practical exams. And I was supposed to forget that I have a heart. I was supposed to regurgitate and then vomit undigested, not understood paragraphs from books, lists of diseases and conditions and bookish treatments mimicking lists of grocery or things for garage sell. It was supposed to come out in sequence that was given in books.
This wasn’t the examination of my skills; it didn’t test my knowledge. Feelings were contra- indicated. I think what it tasted was mere short term memory and limits of my hearts’ patience.
Live patients were there. But for us they were mere ‘cases’. Not ‘live human cases’ but mere plain ‘cases’, because the ‘live human’ component was supposed to be ignored. They were mere collections of signs, a pile of derangement. And things were supposed to happen as they are given in the books [in small question- answer booklets not in standard books]. And if they were not according to the booklets, we were supposed to mold them and modify them and finally tell them as they are given in books. Let the patient go to hell. Neglect the patient… remember its [the cases’] name; neglect the complaints… remember the diagnosis; neglect the situation… remember things of academic interest.