FOUR: Parallel Worlds


Jenna’s Side of The World

Nine days.  After days of waiting, it’s all down to one digit.  Jenna felt as though it was only yesterday since she handed in her resignation letter.   No, it was two months ago when that happened, and waiting felt so slow.

But now.  Nine days.

It all seemed so fast.

She has no problem leaving the company, but leaving her students has begun to become an issue.  Those cute, adorable little children who didn’t know why they were sent to the center in the first place can now hum tunes and sing a song or two.  All thanks to Teacher Jenna.

Day Nine seemed to move particularly slower, not because it was a bad day, but simply because Jenna was observing a little bit more, as though trying to capture mental images of the place and her students frame by frame.  From their laughters to their whines, and the looks on their parents faces.

She paused a little while longer as she observed Mr Lim.  He was one of the only few dads in the room, as the children as usually accompanied by their mothers.  An IT-expert who had no obvious outward expression of affection for his son on their first few weeks, he now dances and sings with his kid with a warm, joyful expression on his face – sometimes as though enjoying the class more than his child does.  Jenna wasn’t sure if she was responsible for that transformation, but those were the little things that kept her motivated to do her job well.  She found herself drawing a clear  line between disliking her employers and a developing affection for her classes.

But the thought of leaving makes the line all blurry again.


Sue’s Side of the World

The doctor-patient professional barrier has been breached alright.  From one brief visitation to her teenage patient, Sue found herself spending more and more time with Kar Mun – she would push Kar Mun around in her wheelchair as they talked about almost anything they could think of.  Maybe it’s because of the small age gap, as compared to older and probably wiser doctors, Sue found it easy to understand her young friend each she shared something close to heart.

Sometimes people along the hospital corridors would look on the two new friends and Sue did worry if it would compromise her reputation as a doctor, but the more she got to know Kar Mun the least she cared about how others viewed them.  It probably would have been less awkward if Kar Mun was a friend she knew a long time ago, but the way she saw it – it did not matter if she knew her then or now.  The onlookers would not be able to tell the difference anyway, not that it mattered to her.

As any patient would, Kar Mun continued to make progress in her recovery.  Sue knew she was going to be discharged soon, but was not aware exactly when.  Without the chance to say goodbye, Kar Mun checked out while Sue was out for lunch.  When Sue returned, she was surprised to see the empty room.  One of the nurses told her that her new friend has already left, and while Sue was glad that her patient was ready to leave the hospital, she can’t help but feel sad she’ll be missing a friend at the same time.

All along in meds school, Sue learned that doctors aren’t allowed to have personal relationships with their patients, for fear that it will compromise their professional judgment in making decisions.

But no one really emphasized that  it also made parting harder.

Sometimes, healing takes more than medicine and stitches and surgery.  Certain wounds require laughter, prayer and a dose of friendship.  As she stared at the empty room, Sue thought she may not be the best doctor around, but she knew that she had something to do with one small part of her friend’s recovery.

2 Responses to FOUR: Parallel Worlds

  1. mousie says:

    Niice one mushu 🙂

  2. aL says:

    Parallel indeed

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