Tuesday, 15 October 2013

Lee's Story - Part 3/7; Transition

When I next saw Lee I just couldn’t believe my eyes – what a transformation! He was sitting up in bed and was able to chat lucidly and freely. He said that the last treatment was amazing and he felt as though something had definitely shifted. His visitors later that evening all commented that they could see his old self was back again, something they hadn’t seen for a very long time. Lee told me that he felt very strong, in fact he used the words 'normal again', and he knew absolutely that this was not his time to go. 

I continued to visit Lee twice weekly in the Hospice and he seemed to be going from strength to strength, despite a major setback a couple of weeks previously. At that time, he had been doing very well indeed - he was no longer reliant upon oxygen, his breathing was normal, he had good pain control and had regained his appetite. In acupuncture terms, his pulses had regained their balance and I was treating him very minimally, purely on command points.

However, things went pear-shaped a couple of days later when his bowels appeared to be blocked – in an attempt to regain weight, he had been eating an enormous amount of food (2500 calories per day) but his bowels had stopped working (probably due to the morphine and other drugs) and nothing was getting through. He was once again in tremendous pain, had a stomach drain in situ, was nil by mouth and was scheduled to have ileostomy surgery. The pulse imbalance had returned with a vengeance, he was in very low spirits and did not feel up to any needling, so I treated him with acupressure instead.

A few days later, I received the message that Lee’s bowels had started to work again and that he had a reprieve from surgery - and when could I come to give him another treatment!  At my next visit, once again I was amazed at the difference in him – the pulse imbalance had disappeared again – in fact, the pulses were the most even to date. This time I performed a gentle ‘clearance’ treatment as before and finished by gently needling just four points.

Lee’s transformation was such that he was allowed to go home after a few weeks, although he continued with his chemotherapy as an outpatient. He told me that he felt the work we were doing together was extremely worthwhile and he really looked forward to his treatments. He said he felt very focussed and strong afterwards, and also relaxed and rested, but energised. Above all, he said that I was probably his only visitor who came without making any demands, physically or emotionally - for which he was immensely grateful.

This experience brings home to me how important it is to be aware of our own emotions and to maintain a balance, especially through difficult times, where words can be superfluous - a mere presence can be enough. It was certainly very humbling for me to see such a change occur with just the simplest of means and good intention.

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