“Am I going to be a burden to you all?”
Those were the first few words Muhammad Alif Rykell Shah uttered to his mum in hospital, after coming out of the operating theatre.
Despite experiencing a harrowing traffic accident and undergoing three surgeries within a week, Alif found the capacity to think of his family first.
His mum Siti Sarah Rahim told AsiaOne that she was clear in her response to Alif's question.
“Never. Mummy and daddy will always be there for you,” she replied.
Alif is the survivor of a road traffic accident that occurred along Gambas Ave last Sunday (April 14) where a fellow road motorcyclist died.
On Wednesday, Sarah posted her thoughts on the accident and her son’s current condition.
Sarah wrote about how tragic the accident was and relayed her condolences to the other motorcyclist's family.
However, the 42-year-old healthcare worker was keen to remind others that another young man, her son, was involved in the accident too.
“All I see in every news is a 20-year-old man conveyed to hospital conscious. Nothing else about him, not even his name. Did anyone even ask what happened to him?” the post read.
Last Sunday, Sarah received a call with news no mother wants to hear.
She told AsiaOne that Khoo Teck Puat Hospital informed her of Alif's involvement in a road traffic accident.
After rushing down to the hospital, the devastated mother found out that Alif had multiple injuries including severe internal bleeding, crushed left pelvic, broken ribs, broken wrist, a hole in his left elbow, laceration and torn lips.
When asked about her son’s condition, Sarah said: “Yesterday, he was not stable. He is scheduled for surgery again today (April 14) but might have to postpone. We have to wait for the doctor's update.”
She's heartbroken from the situation Alif is in and said she would willingly swap places with him if possible.
With every cry of pain from her son, Sarah said she tries her best to hide her tears.
Alif doesn’t recall the accident at all, she added, but is currently speaking.
The 20-year-old enrolled nurse is the second youngest in a close-knit family of seven and has been asking about his siblings while in hospital.
Alif’s selfless nature was also evident when he asked his mum how the family would cope with him post-accident.
“We’ve not been given the amount [for medical bills], but it looks like at least $30,000 to $60,000 for now, based on [what] the doctor [estimated],” Sarah said.
It'll add up to a substantial amount given that the family "doesn't earn much", she added.
The family lives in a 4-room flat in Woodlands.
Some members of the public have alerted a non-profit organisation to Alif’s situation and they’ve been in contact with Sarah on how financial help could be rendered.
"Even though I am very angry and sad, I thank god for giving us another chance to be with him."