It’s useful to be afraid
Why do they say the phone “rang bitterly?” The phone rings. Isn’t it about the content of the message from the other person, whether it’s painful or not?
My friend on the phone was saying something that I just could not comprehend. It was about what a friend of ours has gone through. “We were in Segmenler park last night. We were chatting and joking. .... He rode something like a swing. He just fell. He was motionless. We called an ambulance and rushed him to the emergency of a university hospital. We were told his neck is broken. The doctors speak badly...”
I screamed, “What are you talking about?” As soon as I understood the situation, aware that I should not panic. “No bad thinking, no bad talking. Our friend is young, has a strong body and will get through this,” I said.
I was going to tell you why a friend approaching his 40s was being so childish, why he wasn’t paying attention… But, I remembered that I, who left the age of 60 behind quite a while ago, couldn’t help but try a similar sports equipment for a short time recently. After all, shouldn’t we always keep that child in us alive?
Two sets of surgeries, two anxious weeks behind us, now our friend is much better. We have a higher confidence that our young friend can get through this situation, that he might recover totally and may have no trouble. Of course, you have weeks, maybe months of physical therapy ahead of us before seeing him, God willing, walking on his two feet.
That’s life. A young man who is not even 40 years old rides a swing for a moment of fun, falls and puts his life at serious risk. Fortunately, he’ll be joining us after he is discharged from hospital and the physical therapy for a while.
“Life is as thin as yarn, you have to be careful; it breaks,” my late grandmother used to say. I witnessed last week that you can go from one moment to the next instantly. I was looking forward to the interview of Dr. Ceren Sözeri, which we were to host online in the afternoon at the Press House on Thursday. I was very much excited about what Sözeri, a very prominent advocate of ethics in media, would say during the program. I thought that the Sözeri interview would be a special event in the Press House interviews of the Journalists’ Association, which was carried out within the framework of the Democracy for Media project being supported by the European Union. Next night, there was a film event in the garden of the German Embassy, and I was planning to join it. That would be the first open air such event since the pandemic outbreak last year.
At around 15:30, I started feeling tingling in my nose when I spoke to my friend Duygu Guvenç, who was the moderator for the Sözeri interview, slated to start half an hour later. A while later I had a very runny nose. I barely delivered the “welcome” speech. Until the end of the conference I somehow managed the situation but with a sour throat, high temperature and nasal flow I escaped home the moment the event was over.
Although I’ve been paying attention to maintain distance for a very long time, I’ve tried to think if there were any friends who were close to me. No, thank God.
A few hours later, when my temperature reached 38, the panic in me and my wife escalated. And don’t you get a sore throat? We barely made it through the morning. We were at the door of a private hospital. After I was tested we’re back at home, I in one room, my wife with a mask in the other. It was an anxious wait that lasts until the evening. Finally, we received the good news: Negative PCR.
Next morning we rushed to the hospital to see an ear nose and throat specialist. After checks and tests, the doctor said it was an “allergic runny nose.” What? “Pollens” he said. By that hour, anyhow, I returned to normal. Psychological factors must have played a role as well.
It’s a matter of perception. For myself, for my wife, with which I have always been in close contact, and for my colleagues, even though I always tried to keep a meter, never approached closer to any, how scared I was in those 24 hours. It turns out I was such a coward...
I wish we could be cautious when riding the swing, social contact in this epidemic environment, walking around as allergic individuals during periods of abundant pollen, and always being cautious about the consequences, and be afraid of possible consequences. I’m sure life will be better.