Mohammad Shahadat had never thought that fate would take such a drastic turn that he would have to deal with normal daily life with pain and trauma- yet he doesn’t stop thanking God and counting his blessings.

Recently back from a trip to Mecca – the most pious duty in the life of a devout Muslim – Shahadat told The Indian Weekender, “Hajj pilgrimage helped me in dealing with the trauma.”

Shot on the shoulder at Linwood Mosque on Friday, March 15, while trying to help a fellow devotee fallen on the carpet with bullet wound- chef Mohammad Shahadat still feels haunted with the incidents of the black Friday that took the lives of 51 and injured 49.

Six months into the incident, Shahadat has undergone five surgeries to his shoulder and arm as doctors tried to take shrapnel from the bullet that pierced his collarbone and burst damaging nerves near the neck, spinal cord, shoulder and right hand.

“The bullet burst into pieces and lodged near the spinal cord, lungs, and neck and irreversibly damaging some nerves near the neck and some shrapnel still lies inside but cannot be taken out by doctors- even by surgery,” Mohammad Shahadat told The Indian Weekender.

“The doctors have said that they are considering cutting a part of my hip bone and fixing it on my shattered shoulder,” Shahadat added.

A chef by profession and working at the newly opened restaurant in Christchurch Bawarchi- Shahadat says that he no longer works with the restaurant and cannot start his work life for the unforeseeable future.

“I can barely lift my right hand- and suffer tremors, fever and multiple episodes of pain while sitting, eating, wearing clothes and even sleeping,” Shahadat added.

Shahadat’s father, wife and four children came to New Zealand mid-April to be alongside him as he struggled to recover and regroup his life back to normal.

Shahadat was also one of the 200 members (victims and victim’s family members) who were invited by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia to perform the annual Hajj pilgrimage in Mecca.

“I was fortunate to have been called by Allah, the almighty to perform Hajj and I cannot thank Allah enough for giving me another life- I pray that the 51 people who lost their lives find their place in Jannat,” Shahadat said.