Saturday, April 4, 2009

The Waiting Room

Purgatory is the condition or process of purification in which the souls of those who die in a state of grace are made ready for heaven.

That's what the Critical Care Unit I visited this past week felt like: a processing center, a waiting room, a place beyond time and outside of "normal reality" where patients teeter between this world and the next. The patients themselves are utterly fragile, strapped in to their high tech beds, hooked up to monitors and intravenous tubes. There's so much machinery around them, so much stuff dripping into their arms, down their throats, that I couldn't help but immediately think about the Borg. That wasn't very compassionate of me, was it?

The electric hums, ticking, beeping and other rhythmic noise would drive me crazy over time. The patients are so out of it that it probably doesn't annoy them. I felt for the nurses, though, who are healthy, caring people. I can't for the life of me figure out how they do their jobs, day after day. Wow.

As it turned out the nurses seemed relieved to see me - don't know why. I didn't ask and they didn't offer any reasons why it was OK to break hospital rules. Maybe they do it all the time, I don't know. They left me with my client for about a half hour, watching, from the other side of the room. Who knows what his family told them. They seemed curious.

My client was already on the mend by the time I got there, breathing without the respirator, thank God, but he wasn't alert enough for normal interaction. I sat next to him for a few minutes, let my hand rest on one small square of his arm that wasn't hooked up to anything. I talked to him for awhile, the same way I talk to ghosts, I noticed. I can't remember what I said, but my tone of voice was congenial, I think. The whole time I sat there I could not locate his energy field, something that ordinarily is quite palpable and robust. Where was his energy? Maybe I'll never know.

When it felt right to do so, I stood up, traced the schematic pattern of soul retrieval over his body (three times just to make sure), after which I did some of my shamanic "dancing" - slow motion movements that I believe have an impact on energy flow, though - who knows? The nurses were very entertained and maybe that was the most positive effect of my visit. Cheerful nurses give better care, I bet.

My client will recover fully, they say. He's out of critical care now, in a regular hospital room. He is conscious, eating, speaking. It was a close call, but he's going to make it. Thank God.

Be well, ya'all. Stay out of critical care, you hear me? I mean it! OK.


Gary said...

I'll do my best to take that last bit of advice.

I can't imagine what the nurses where thinking but...well, maybe I can. I'm sure they were curious and open minded and wondering what 'secrets' you held that their training left out. Perhaps.

And kudos to you for entering a world that was uncomfortable to bring healing and strength. How cool are you? I mean it, really, how cool are you Reya!

Lizzy Frizzfrock said...

Ditto to Gary's first comment. Kudos to you for being there and I'm happy to hear your client is on the mend.

On a happier note: the flowers are gorgeous & I love the photo of the person on the bench in the park.

Happy weekend!

Mrsupole said...

Ditto for me too on Gary's first comment.
I am sure that you helped your client get better and the nurses noticed this and probably were thankful, I would really like to see you do your work, I am sure is is fantastic to watch.

Very thankful that your client is getting better.

God bless.

Carolyn said...

Reya, your healing energy is in everything you do, your words, your beautiful photography and your work. Thank you so much for sharing that with us.
Blessings and smiles

Butternut Squash said...

I just want to echo Carolyn.

I always find something to fill myself, at your table. Your description of energy work is very interesting to me.

Steve said...

I bet nurses see a lot of unusual things, though probably many are less positive than your interaction with that client.

It's so interesting that you couldn't locate his energy.

I'm glad he's on the mend. Who knows what positive effects you had?!

JC said...

I've been there & done that ... ICU .. I'm glad to hear that your client is on the mend.

Lover of Life said...

I think nurses tend to believe in things most find unbelievable. They were probably intrigued.

I love that cat! He, (and he looks like a he), reminds me of our old cat who passed a couple of years ago. Same stature and "look". Sort of imperious.

Reya Mellicker said...

Imperious is the word I was searching for. Thank you. Yes that cat was imperious.

And thank you Butternut and all the rest of you for finding something worth reading here. It means a lot, thank you!

Tom said...

It is interesting that you don't remember your healing words...sort of like you are channeling somehow...
i wonder what cats are really thinking...they probably aren't as 'imperious' as we all think they are. Still, they probably think us humans are nuts.

Washington Cube said...

The nurses weren't discounting what she did. I know a nurse who works trauma, and at that stage, their mindset is open to a lot of alternative means of healing. I am sure each of them could tell stories of "You'd never believe that someone turned around for the better in their health when they shouldn't have" stories.

I love being around cats. One secret is to slow your human rhythm to meet their cat rhythm and get in sync with them.

Elizabeth said...

What magnolia!

Yes, critical care is terribly weird and very very odd.
When R. had a really serious accident ten years ago, I spent many hours in there or hanging about outside the door.
I have mixed feelings about it. Maybe all this high tech is wonderful but maybe it isn't.
I do think touch and good cheer help us all.

ps tell Jake he has a new brother in NY.
Just got back from adopting a puppy!

deborah said...

always worth reading
nothing to add to others here
except the cat
if you can
waking to this look
every day
Hobbes sits on my bed
and stares at me
til I startle awake
and feed him

love u so

Reya Mellicker said...

Mrsupole - Energy work, when witnessed, looks dorkier than you can imagine. I'm sure if you were engaged in the work, though, you would be able to feel the flowing and shifting and unblocking.

Tom my mind is like a sieve when I'm working. Clients say, "Hey that was so great when you told me during the last session that blah blah blah." Most of the time I don't have a clue what they're talking about. I was taught not to use my own energy when doing healing work, but to open my crown and root chakras and let the energy flow through me. I think it's a good thing, but it can make me appear to be a total space cadet.

Cube I'm so glad to see you hanging around in the blog world again. Your posts are up to your usual standards of excellence. Welcome home!

Robbin'sMama said...

It must make you feel very good to be able to go in there and help. Thanks for sharing. And I love the photos.

ArtSparker said...

Good for your client to be around for the spring, not the time I'd pick to leave this world.

I like the rioting magnolia blossoms.

tut-tut said...

I agree with Artsparker. Nice to see her, too.

Delwyn said...

Reya, see I knew that you would know what to do...It's your gift...

Altho' we live in different hemispheres, with opposite seasons dictating our weather, the magnolia tree on my street is flowering too... fancy that...

Guru LaRue ( I am not really a Guru it just rhymes with my name:) said...

I work at a hospital in West Palm Beach Florida and I find working with these Cancer patients and their care-givers to be incredibly rewarding. I feel so lucky to do CranioSacral Therapy and Guided Meditation with these folks. It is becoming more main steam. They seem to really appreciate the healing connection. It helps the spirit including my own. I do not have to convince them to receive. I am happy to hear you had the opportunity to support in this way. :)

Dubby said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Dubby said...

I can tell you Gary how cool she is...way cool!

Auntie, aka cagny said...

Hi Reya,
Your photos always take away my breath.
I hate hospitals. To me, I feel death there. When I went to get my MRI at the hospital, I felt death all around me.

Reya Mellicker said...

Yes Delwyn, fancy that!

Kerry said...

Of course the nurses were curious. I am curious, too. How does anything really work? I don't know! Thanks, Reya; that was beautiful even if I don't know how you did it.

Lori ann said...

Yikes! good on you Reya. And oh my gosh your photos are incredible. I love the White House and the montage, no, all of them!


Ronda Laveen said...

Nurses are great healers and I have had the pleasure of working with many. And there are many more I am proud to call friends and clients. They take a back seat to the doctors and often much flack from them.

I always enjoy the opportunity to educate them in the fact that doctors only came along a hundred or so years ago. That before that, healing was passed from mother to daughter along the female lineage. Just letting them know that they are part of a very ancient and honored chain, is a pleasure. Most of them have no idea.

For many years I worked with a chiro who was also an RN. I always got to do his Cont Ed with him. The catalogs and flyers, along with many alopathic choices, contained holistic and esoteric studies like Healing Touch, Guided Meditation, and many more.

One of my clients is a retired surgeon. He would often quiz me on energy work, meditation, chanting, ohming and other forms of metaphysical work. I initially found myself tempering my answers. Maybe to spare him long answers. Maybe to spare myself from looking like a weirdo.

One day he asked me a very pointed question on the how-tos of energy work in healing. He asked in such a way that I could not hedge. Asking for inspiration, I finally answered...Well, we are all just light, energy, and which point I thought I had lost him. To my surprise, he replied, "Of course we are!"

He now comes to my meditation group and gives Diksha, Ohms and chants. He is exploring the opposite side of healing and brings a lot to our group. From his viewpoint, he has seen enough to know that all of the answers are not in pure medicine.


lettuce said...

it is a strange world
unreal and also hyper-real

(and yes! borg-like)

i'm glad you had the chance and courage to bring healing into it

Pam said...

A wonderful and interesting post Reya.Your photographs always grab me,yet I am fascinated with your healing experiences in this post and the comments. My daughter and I are quite familiar with the zone you talk about, she more so, as she works both empathically and practically as a nurse with the aged and dying.I'm fascinated with your process you mentioned. I must learn more, but it's a maze out there.Good work Reya,and as the first comment stated "How cool are you!".

Reya Mellicker said...

Ronda I bet that retired surgeon has awesome hands for healing. The best of all the worlds!

I have an M.D. in my practice but have never worked with surgeons, though for years I've thought it would be great to offer sports massage to surgeons and surgical nurses before and after surgery, get them awake and lively before they go cut on someone, and then "cool" them off afterwards. I still think it's a great idea.

Susan said...

I was glad to read the follow-up on your patient.

How do the nurses do it day after day? Probably with the a smiliar sense of mission that you had in visiting this patient/client, although it's not easy.

I wonder about the energy field--was it so deeply internal and focused on healing--that it did not manifest externally? You're right. You may never know.

P.S. Thanks for the beautiful spring photos. If I am ever in critical care, I hope to have a vision of sitting on a bench in front of a calm pond, smelling fragrant cherry blossoms!

John Hayes said...

There is something to the ambience or energy of hospitals-- ICU in particular, but also ERs-- you described it well; it is purgatorial. Your observations were quite fascinating-- lovely pix, too.

Still only having sporadic internet, but am glad to be catching up on some favorite blogs when I have the chance.