COLUMN: Spouse's Turn
KP Wilson talks about life with the Ayurveda doctor Rosemary
By Shevlin Sebastian
Photo by Ajesh Madhav
When KP Wilson was a young man, he was not sure that it would be worthwhile going into the family business of Ayurveda treatment: the 150-year-old Kadamkulathy Vaidyasala. So he took a B.Com degree from Christ College Irinjalakuda.
However, in the 1980s, Ayurveda bloomed all over the world and suddenly he realised that he had an opportunity to develop his inheritance. So, when he was looking for a bride, he searched for a girl who was an Ayurveda doctor.
One proposal was about a girl, named Rosemary, who was doing her house surgency at the Tripunithara Ayurveda Medical College. So Wilson met Rosemary, in November, 1986, at her home at Kaipattoor in Kalady. “When I saw her, for the first time, wearing a green saree, I got a good impression,” says Wilson. “I felt that she would be an able companion and would help me in my Ayurveda business.”
So Wilson said yes. Two days later, he met Rosemary at her sister, Annamma's home in Kochi. Not surprisingly, the subject of discussion was Ayurveda.
This also was the topic during their wedding, on January 11, 1987, at the St. Xavier's Church at South Thanissery, near Mala. “What was unforgettable for me was that the parish priest, Fr. Antony Irimban, spoke about ayurveda and its benefits during the sermon,” says Wilson. “Usually, priests talk about marriage, its importance and responsibilities. Maybe because Fr. Antony knew my family, he decided to talk about Ayurveda.”
Soon after the marriage, the couple went for a honeymoon to Kanyakumari. At the Vivekananda Memorial, Wilson, an avid photographer, climbed a rock and was intently taking snaps, when he slipped and fell. “My camera was damaged, and I had a few bruises,” says Wilson. “That is the enduring memory of my honeymoon.”
When asked about his wife's plus points, Wilson says, “It was only because of my wife that I was able to make my father's business into a commercial success. She gave full support to me. Rosemary is completely dedicated to her job as a doctor. She has put in as much effort as I.”
Rosemary also has a gift of getting along with people. “Many patients have come back for return consultations,” says Wilson. “She knows how to maintain friendships. And despite her busy schedule, Rosemary has always run the home in a smooth manner. It has not been easy for her to be a chief physician, wife and mother, but she has managed everything well.”
The couple have three children: Pathrose, 26, an Ayurveda doctor, who is working at the Vaidyasala. Mary Anne Brigitte, 21, is doing her third-year MBBS at the Amala Institute of Medical Sciences, Thrissur, while 14-year-old Kuruvilla is a Class 8 student at the Holy Grace Academy in Mala.
“Once a year, we would go for holidays to places like Ooty, Kodaikanal, Malaysia or Singapore,” says Wilson.
As for the drawbacks, Wilson says, “Once Rosemary makes a decision, she will not budge. And even if I am able to persuade her to change it, Rosemary will not be convinced that it is right. Sometimes, in different circumstances, this can be regarded as a plus point.”
Incidentally, the Vaidyasala employs 600 people and there are hospitals in Thiruvananthapuram, Kochi, Mala, Chalakudy and an Ayurveda resort in Athirapally. “Once a week, Rosemary visits all the hospitals,” says Wilson, the Managing Director. “We have doctors and physicians who are running it, but Rosemary does the overall supervision.”
Despite their busy schedule, Sundays are a day of rest at their home in Mala. “We go for morning mass,” says Wilson. “And after lunch, we often go to Kochi.” Sometimes, they spend time in the Lulu Mall and see a film. “The last movie we saw was 'Vellimoonga' and we enjoyed it,” says Wilson. “Rosemary also likes to do shopping. Usually, she buys clothes. She is not fashionable, but likes to dress well. We end up leaving the mall when it is closing time. It is a good stress-buster for both of us.”
They are also a couple who get along well with each other. “We are both working people, but have developed a good understanding,” says Wilson. “I might have some positive traits which my wife may not have, and vice-versa. But we try to use all our positive qualities and work as a team. And we talk to each other all the time about all that is happening in our work and home. In many marriages, there is no sharing or communication. Spouses are living isolated lives.”
Wilson has also ensured that his ego does not enter the picture. “I come from a long-standing family of physicians,” says Wilson. “I could have told Rosemary that I know more about Ayurveda than her, but I have never done that.”
(The New Indian Express, Kochi and Thiruvananthapuram)