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part eccentric ... part fun .... stubborn .. but not stuck up ... very open to different views, ideas and possibilities ... varied interests ... engineer ... mba ... trying-to-be-a-good-entrepreneur ... ex-software ... ex-quality ... ex-tobacco ... ex-alcohol ... trying-to-be-ex-cancer
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Friday, August 10, 2007

CBC 4000 and climbing

Most of my friends have been tracking my progress (against blood cancer) thru this blog.... there was a time when I made frequent postings ... in those days; no one felt the need to mail or call to find out about my health ... lately I have been getting a lot of calls and mails from my pals - all wondering if am doing OK ... I guess a personal health update is overdue

So here's the latest -

I have completed the first-line of treatment ... this means I have undergone R-MACOP-B chemo therapy and have also taken radiation (40 Gy which were distributed over 20 sittings) ... If this first-line treatment succeeds ( I hope it will) then I will not need any further treatment and will go on to live a (hopefully satisfying) long life :-)

When the radiation got over (in late June) I came back to Delhi have been resting at home for the past 1.5 months ... in this time I have slowly evolved and brought into action my Mission-Remission ... Mission-Remission is a three staged program for getting my life back
here's how it goes -

1. Let blood counts mount
Chemo and radiation had slowed down the production of White Blood Cells (WBCs also called Leukocytes) in my body ... a normal man has WBC count ranging from 4000-11000, mine had come down to 2400. The first thing that needed to be done was the wait for the blood counts to come back to the normal range. I rested at home, ate good food, got blood counts analyzed twice a week ... all in anticipation of normal blood counts ... My counts first rose to 3000 level ... stayed there for a while and then slowly started improving .... I reduced the frequency of getting counts done to once a week ... Last Monday the blood counts touched 4000 ... if the figure goes further up in next Monday's blood counts I would declare myself to be officially back to normal blood counts.

2. Get back in shape
To give you an idea ... I was 5 kgs over my ideal-body-weight when I was diagnosed with cancer ... the treatment put me on steroids and I gained a further 5 kgs .... so now I am 10 kgs overweight ... before I got the disease I could work 10 kg dumbbells with ease ... now I have trouble doing 3 kgs ... earlier I could go on a morning walk of 6 km and come back feeling refreshed ... now I get totally drained out in a 3-4 km walk .... Clearly I need to shed weight and build up my strength and stamina
I have given this 3 months time ... starting next week (when I will declare the blood counts to be officially normal) ... aim is reduction of weight by atleast 10 kgs (from 81 kgs today), reduction in waist ( from 38 inch today, to below 32 inch) and regaining stamina (back to comfortable 6 km walks) ... in the process I might also get back my strength (with other things in place it will come automatically)
During this time I also aim to get a job for myself ... What kind of a job? ... I don't know ... I am a man of many talents (some would say "well hidden", but I ignore them :-) ... and since I am a very fast learner ... I can potentially do many things (no point being modest these days :-) ... I have to make up my mind ... there are unconventional options like teaching or taking up a job in one of the NGOs ... but my guess is I would get back to rigmarole of corporate life ... any suggestions on this are most welcome ... please feel free to shoot out possible career options and openings at baawara@gmail.com

3. Keep on the good work
Once life gets back to normal ... I intend to keep it that way ... I probably will need to be more careful with my health than most blokes ... but hey staying fit cannot be that bad a choice ... I think making little challenges for myself will help ... first challenge ... completing Delhi Half-Marathon in 2008 :-)

I told you so

About a year back I wrote a protest post on this blog.
It was called Live-in, Wives, Legislation and Jail

At that time I thought that the "Domestic Violence Act" was unfair (I still do) . It (apart from its many other shortcomings) assumed that men were guilty and therefore must be punished by (pre-conviction) prison sentences imposed by their wives.

My argument, that the DV law is flawed, has been backed by this news article (to see the video click on "watch video"). The article says that the DV law is being misused- even Supreme Court thinks that the law was badly drafted.

A basic question ... Does a law become good just because it has been passed by an elected parliament ??? ... looking at the biased domestic violence law the answer seems to be - NO ... then comes the more important point ... when all laws are not good then shouldn't we stop following the "not good" ones ? (this may look like sedition to a lot of people - but it is an honest question)

You see - an impartial judiciary can ensure implementation of any law (by punishing the violators) ... India can boast of a slow, but largely impartial judiciary ... If judiciary has to implement "bad laws", it would effectively be spreading injustice (even if it has the best intentions ... because the fault lies with the law not the judiciary) ... Any law not based on time-tested and important principles like equality and assumed-innocence runs a big chance of being a "bad law"... By dishonouring the principles of equality, assumed-innocence etc, the parliament is actually exposing the common man (note the pun) to possible travesty of justice.

The onus is on the parliament - By passing good laws, they can prevent the courts from meeting out a travesty of justice ... more importantly they can prevent people (like me) from thinking "... should I even be following any of these biased rules? ..."

Greater good of people demands that the rules and laws be based upon equitable and universally accepted principles ... I think some "equitable" principals are laid out in our constitution (I know the constitution provides an exception from "equality" by saying that special rules can be made for women- making a women specific law for tackling a problem faced by both genders is plain idiotic) ... Whether these principles are "universally accepted" remains an open question (The fact is - An individual has practically no choice over his country's constitution just like she/he has no choice over her/his parents, her/his looks , religion, etc ... most people are usually happy with what they have ... the ones who are not become - whiners ... deserters ... misfits ... rebels ... revolutionaries ... pioneers ... inventors ... prophets etc)

Finally, the two things that can reduce the justifications (actually there are some good ones) for partial and biased laws are
1) A more swift, effective and impartial investigative force (can it be police?)
2) Faster justice from the courts