Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Corporeal Intelligence


This image makes me think of that song "I'm a Little Teapot, Short and Stout."

When you cut your finger, your body responds immediately by sending clotting agents to the scene of the wound, and by beginning, instantly, to toss strings of collagen back and forth across the cut, the first steps in healing.

The mind is not so great during the first stages of wounding. Either it goes blank, a state we call shock, or it begins to create terrible stories, i.e. I might bleed out from this cut, or just the opposite, stories of denial, i.e. This is just a small cut, I don't need stitches. I'll just rinse it off and continue making dinner.

Later on in the healing process, the mind can do wonders, but initially, it's far less effective than the body itself.

During this past week, you, along with my family and friends in "real" life, have taken the role of corporeal intelligence by sending kind thoughts of condolence, sympathy cards, by telephoning, taking me out to dinner, listening, and checking up on me. I've been in a real spin. You have been the collagen and the clotting agents. I am so grateful!

Some of you said you wished you could do more than send love and compassion. Please know that your kindness has been literally and specifically and palpably helpful. It was exactly the first aid I needed but could not provide for myself. I will never be able to thank you enough. I mean that sincerely.

Yesterday I turned a corner. The shock is easing away, and life is coming back into focus. I noticed, for instance (for the the first time in a week), that the weather is unbelievably gorgeous - hot but not too hot, with lots of sunshine, puffy clouds and low humidity. I took one of the household dogs out for a walk last night. He is young and vigorous and was completely happy to walk with me. It felt so good!

Thank you SO MUCH for letting me lean on you this past week. Thank you. I'm going to be OK. Life will continue. Onwards & upwards. L'chaim!

32 comments:

mary said...

Reya, I have been up in the north woods without a computer and am just now catching up. I have wept through all your posts and am so happy to hear the lightness return to your "voice". Only good and healing thoughts to you and hopes for an eventual peace.

Reya Mellicker said...

Thanks Mary!

steven said...

hi reya, what amazes me about the writing community is that there is so much unconditional care and kindness shared.
the clouds parted here (ontario) yesterday for an afternoon of big deep blue almost cloudless sky. it was so benificent magnificent and munificent all at once. there's my three - ....cents worth! have a peaceful day. steven

Tom said...

Happy you are healing....i really like that curvy picture of the domes...I wonder what people think who see you taking pictures of bumpers and windshields? They have no idea the art you producing!

ellen abbott said...

I'm glad it's easing up for you.

Reya Mellicker said...

Tom they think I'm trying to case their car so I can break in and steal something. Or alternatively they think I'm going to give them a ticket (though I'm hardly official looking in my plaid shorts and big hat.)

Sometimes I show them the images. Then they just stare at me with confused looks on their faces.

In the case of this image of the Capitol dome, the Capitol police informed me that the pic I took was a reflection from their captain's car door. No wonder it was so clean and shiny!

Joanne said...

Wonderful to be back out walking with another dog. Animals are great for that too, urging us forward. Glad you're feeling better, the skies are clearing.

sciencegirl said...

It's heartening to know you're feeling better. Past the pain lies the sweetness of memory.

John Hayes said...

So glad you're feeling better; just give yourself time. Love the "little teapot" comment.

The Bug said...

Thanks for taking us on this grief journey with you - one of the reasons I started reading blogs was to get away from the "I'm fine, how are you" interactions I have every day. We're not always fine & I think it does us good to be with each other in that place...

lakeviewer said...

Reya, you get what you send, my dear. You've been always generous and attentive to everybody else. I like your analogy here.

rothko said...

Cheers to this!

Sandra Leigh said...

You're right about the teapot, Reya - complete with steamy tea. I'm glad to see that your clouds are lifting a bit, and that you have doggy friends to help you along.

Dan Gurney said...

Wow. I linked over to your blog from Steven's, and I've seen your comments on Delwyn's.

Your posts about Jake really got me. I lost my beloved dog, Champ, to cancer about 18 months ago. I still hurt. Reading about your loss brought back the sadness. Love hurts when you're separated by death.

I'm glad that the pain is lifting for you. I've found the pain comes and goes, but gradually subsides with the balm of time.

I'll be back.

Rain said...

So nice to read your words today Reya! I'm absolutely stunned by your photography btw. Your reflections are gorgeous.

Deborah said...

you manage to reflect
the best
you manage to transport
above, beyond
you manage to articulate
in image and word
you stitch us together
with love for you

Ronda Laveen said...

You're welcome. There is something that is so healing about being with animals too. I a glad to hear you have a walking companion. What a wonderful combo of give and take on both sides.

mum said...

I love the Capitol Dome as teapot - although it can hardly be described as 'short and stout'.

Glad to hear it's easing up. Be well, Reya.

Ali said...

No thanks necessary - we want and love to help!

And YOU are helping YOU as well! Definitely something to be extremely proud of.

Steve said...

I'm so glad you turned a corner! Be prepared to turn back again now and then, because unfortunately healing isn't always all that linear -- but you know that, I'm sure.

That pic of the capitol is great. Did the police give you trouble for taking a pic of their captain's car, or were they just curious?

willow said...

Hey, maybe that old devil moon did help you turn the corner, after all? Glad to hear things are looking up. Peace, dear friend.

willow said...

PS--yes! The capitol is doing a teapot dance in your pic! :D

Reya Mellicker said...

The Capitol police were very suspicious until I showed them the image. Then they gave me that blank look and turned their attention to more important matters. Oops.

janis said...

Puppy kisses still coming your way from Riley, Bandit & Dakota!

Nancy said...

Love your use of a cut. So applicable to the loss of a loved one. I'm so glad you are feeling better, Reya.

Lizzy Frizzfrock said...

Reya, I'm so glad you are feeling better today. Perhaps taking the young pup for a walk is helping... it's a channel for your emotions. Enjoy your walks!

Sandra Leigh said...

Reya, one more thing - there's something waiting for you over at The Turtle.

Mary Ellen said...

Great to hear the energy coming back! (But if you have down patches, don't get too impatient with yourself.)

Val said...

great news!! and i LOVE the teapot xx

Barry said...

I agree with you entirely about the blogging community. The help they give, if only for afar, is physically palpable and genuinely healing.

First time I've been called a clotting agent though!

Reya Mellicker said...

No offense, Barry! I meant it in the best possible way!

Barbara Martin said...

Reya, we are all interconnected and I'm pleased to hear you are on the mend.