Putting the Pieces Together
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Join Date: Jun 2006
Irie's Personal History (Piece #17)
[Pre-requisite: Irie's reflection on his past]
I wanted to become a doctor was the usual reasons that most people have.
"If I become a doctor, I can become rich. I'll be looked up to by everyone."...I believe that those were my initial reasons.
So when I played with my friends back when I was little, I acted as if I were the group's doctor. Using what I learned from household medical books, I cleansed the wounds when my friends fell and I put ice-packs when they sprained an ankle. Everyone was saying that Kyousuke-kun will grow up to become a fine doctor one day, and I believed so too.
My family was poor so they highly praised my goal. They told me that in order to become a doctor, I needed to study really hard. I remember them borrowing quackery books from the rent-a-book store for me. However, borrowing such books does not come cheap. So, I speed-read through one book in one day, and my parents would go back to the store to exchange it with another one by faking that they accidentally borrowed a book that they've read before. Because of this, my parents were able to borrow two books for the price of one.
Of course now that I am a doctor, I realize those books were useless quackery. Nevertheless, those books were a highly motivational in leading me to my goal.
The neighbors all touted me as Dr. Kyousuke-kun, and I was always the recommended candidate for the class health officer. Even my teachers consuled me with what courses to take in order to become a doctor.
Of course, becoming a doctor is not as easy as it seems. I had to study diligently, and the path to it was very rough indeed.
In order become a doctor, one definitely has to go to college. But, as my family was poor, they refused to let me go to an expensive private university. With that out of the question, the only option left for me was to become admitted to a national public university. Although my grades were not bad, but the admission rate to such elite universities are very marginal. And if one is talking about getting into the medical school of such universities, the chances are even more smaller.
...But, I didn't give up. I studied my ass off. The dream that I had as a kid was the only driving force behind it.
"I'm gonna be a doctor so that everyone's gonna look up to me."
A cheap and childish dream like that was the only thing that kept me going.
....And lo and behold, I got in. I wasn't at the top of the list, but I still got in. I was finally able to step on the start line to achieve my childhood dream.
My parents were very proud of me. ...Both mom and dad didn't go to college, so they took pride that their son got into a prestigious public med school. They invited all of our relatives and they threw a congratulatory party just for me. Even though a public university is still quite expensive for our family, they still celebrated the largest party they ever had thrown.
My dad is the stern type that doesn't show his emotions. He was always stone-faced, he never expressed his opinions, and he never took the lead. He was supported by mom at his side; being the last to appear and leaving in silence. Basically, he was the typical stern-but-silent Japanese dad at the time. So, it was a quite a surprise to see my dad broke down in tears in happiness, that I cried along with him. He would slap my back in pride as he went around all my relatives saying how proud he was to have son like me. He sat face to face with me understanding all the hard work I did to accomplish such an achievement.
That party later became my going-away party as I was about to leave for Tokyo. At the station, my dad hailed many "banzais" as my train pulled away. I was very embarrassed at the commotion, ...but I distinctly recall that tears began to trickle down as the sight of dad began to disappear along the horizon...
After that, I was immersed in hellish days of studying and exams. There were indeed times in which I wanted to just give up and submit myself into the lavish lifestyle of the urban city. But, letters from home would cheer me up everytime, which revitalized me not to give up what was in reach.
During this time, I set a goal to open up a clinic back home, which lacked an internal medicine and a pediatrician. I would never have imagined that I would become involved in the world of neurology at the time...
One day, I received a letter from home that was bit different than the others. Most of the subject was about local affairs and the usual notes on how I was doing...but the postscript stood out as odd.
"Lately, dad has become extremely violent. In awful days, he'll make a huge mess out of the house."
...I was definitely surprised by this as I could never imagine such a quiet dad like mine in such a rage of fury. I wondered what would make my dad to tick him off so much? ...But my mom ended the letter saying that she had no idea what would make him so violent all of a sudden.
My mom has been with my dad for a long time, long before I was born. ...She could figure out small things about my dad that even I couldn't get.
...Yet here I have my mom who couldn't figure out my dad's sudden rage. .....What the heck happened?
Mom and Dad were viewed by our neighbors as being a lovely couple. When I would make mom sad by doing something stupid, my dad would bonk me on the head with his knuckles. ...Why would my dad suddenly go out against my mom? Maybe there might've been a misunderstanding between the two. ...I should go back home over the New Year's holiday to talk about this face to face with my dad.
...Unfortunately, the circumstances were much severe that I had thought.
One cold winter day...the door to my apartment dangled open. I rushed in thinking that I might've been robbed...but there I saw my mom with all her belongings.
...That's right. My mom couldn't take anymore of dad's beatings so she ran away to my place.
This was back in the days when the proverb
"A woman has no place to settle down all her life."
still held true. She couldn't go back to her own family being from the same area as dad, so she came all the way to Tokyo where I was.
And that's when I learned of my dad's domestic violence towards her. My mom broke down as she cried how can such a kind man like him change all of a sudden. She boldly struck down that she was never going back to such an awful person like him ever again.
As the only child, what could I do? ...I tried in vain if she could give dad one more chance...but it was futile when she showed me the bruises on her body...
What happened afterwards is difficult to explain even from me...so I'll just be brief.
After my mom escaped to my place, my dad thought that she was cheating and started going to each of the neighbors house in a rage with a wooden sword in hand. ...He was promptly arrested by the police. He was released soon thereafter, but he firmly believed that someone in the neighborhood was hiding mom and repeated the violence time and time again. He eventually went to the point of getting into fights into anyone who "pissed him off," which lead him to pick a fight with a group of punks who beat him to death.
...At least my relatives gave my dad a decent funeral, but my mom refused to show up. It's no use in beating a dead horse, so no one at the funeral bad-mouthed my dad. ...But everyone was indeed puzzled at how such a quiet person like him would suddenly become so violent...
But it was here that I learned that my dad wasn't just all but of rage and violence that my mom had said. ...From what I heard from my relatives, they told me that he would also suddenly be in euphoria and in depression as well. ...Emotions clicked and changed at a moment's notice. The frequency was seen to be as its worse towards his final days. Furthermore, they also told me that he was constantly complaining of a severe headache. ...My dad was a construction worker. One day, he strongly hit is head on a 2x4 and fell unconscious. ...He immediately woke up and started working as if nothing had happened, so everyone just dismissed it as just a simple mishap. ...But his personality and his headaches would occur after that...
I immediately sensed a connection with this accident and my dad's erratic behavior, so I asked my professor as soon as went back to Tokyo.
Professor: "...Hmm. I can't say for certainty, but it seems that your father might've been affected by some kind of psychological impairment. The accident may have caused an injury to the brain, which may have induced some psychiatric disorder similar to organic brain syndrome. The personality disorder and delirium that your father seemed to have is very similar to the symptoms of such patients."
Human behavior is created by the actions of the brain. ...Damage to the brain causes such erratic behavior. So, my dad was not a psychotic, ...he was just a patient suffering from a disorder...
Professor: "If you have a chance to perform an autopsy of your father's body, you should perform a post-mortem brain analysis. ...You might find a tumor."
However, my dad's body has been cremated already. There is no way to prove this hypothesis anymore.
But I deduced that my father was suffering patient from these accounts. It was the only way I could explain the sudden change of dad's personality. ...I tried in vain to explain this to my relatives, but they weren't convinced.
"If something happened to his brain, he would've died. But, he was alive and healthy. So there was no way that the accident caused damage to his brain. It was just your dad's personality, so the brain has nothing to do with it. He was just distressed deep within his heart."
They brushed it off blaming that it was his
...This was the extent of the majority of the populace's perception of the brain. ...They do not think that the inanimate
they say is just a figment created by the brain.
My relatives refused to believe in my theory. ....But still, I sincerely hoped that one person would hear me out. ...That one person was my mom.
As my mom aged older, she became a bit senile...and started to aggravate about the abuses that she endured by dad. ...By this time, all she did was criticizing my dad. And she always ended her self-pity by breaking down why she had married him in the first place.
...They were such a nice couple together.
...Our family was happy, and it was the best that I could ever have hoped for...
That was why I wanted to reach out to her to make her understand this it was just an unfortunate accident... Dad's behavior was just a symptom of brain damage. ...While I am saddened at what my mom had to go through, but I wanted to tell her it my dad chose to do so. ...I tried explaining to her many times that my dad is not at fault.
...But, ...mom was not convinced either. Before my mom took her last breath, ...I asked her to forgive my dad. Yet, my mom's last word was... "please do not bury my bones next to dad..."
There was no fault to my dad....
...He was just a pitiful patient suffering from an psychological disorder through brain damage. No one is obtuse enough to say shut up to a person coughing from a cold, right? It's a symptom, so people should provide pity and assistance when needed.
In my dad's case, the symptoms weren't as easy to be defined like a cough, ...but it was a something more difficult to ascertain called personality.
If I had studied neurology, I might've been able to convince my mom. ...I might've been able to correct her misunderstanding so that she might've at least been together with dad in heaven.
...When I realized what I could've done...I broke down in tears for being so helpless.
And, that was when it hit me that there are thousands of patients out there in the world just like my dad, who are suffering from this disorder, yet subjected to harsh treatments because of misunderstanding.
And, this was when I found out about a miraculous cure for such disorders called
. Since then, ...I spent my days as a doctor learning about the mysteries of the neurological world so that I can help people who are suffering from such mental illnesses. I studied so that if my dad was still alive...I could cure him by performing it myself.
This...was the main reason why I, Irie Kyousuke, is standing here at his present profession.
Last edited by kj1980; 2007-08-12 at
. Reason: translated by kj1980
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