How to tell about these scenes … there are so many of them. Dumb. Full of pain. In need of compassion. When this is not the case, the viewer suffers, suffers from fears, emotional stress, love addictions, cannot take place in pair relationships and in society …
A large tear suddenly rolled down from his long, beautiful eyelashes. Sobbing came in waves. He spread his arms wide, as if wanting to open his chest and rip out the mental pain that had pressed him for years.
He was 45. He was dying of lung cancer. A second ago, I asked if he had children.
A special place
Hospice life is full of great human grief and small human joys in the face of the inevitable. People come here to die. Much less often - to recover before a new exhausting course of radiation or chemotherapy.
The faces of the people in the wards are rapidly changing. It often happens that you come, but someone with whom you talked last time or who you helped is no longer there. All that remains is the checkered bedspread on the freshly made bed. Yesterday a man thought and lived here …
The hearts of the doctors in this hospital are special. They contain all human suffering, despair, pain. And yet there is a spark of justification. The force that is very young and very old, deeply happy and deeply unhappy, in clear acceptance and rebellious protest, but always inexorably takes human lives.
Through the corridors, bustling and lost, crushed and trying to hold on, relatives pass like a shadow with bags of gifts.
How to tell about these scenes … there are so many of them. Dumb. Full of pain. In need of compassion.
Once, when I was just starting to visit this place, having looked into the room, I saw Michelangelo's "Pieta". Only here it was not the mother who held the dying son in her arms. And the grown-up son, hunched over by the collapsing pain of imminent loss, with a gaze directed somewhere immeasurably deeply full of tears, held his dying mother in his arms.
Getting here, many fall into a daze. They understand everything, they can talk and move, but they don't. As if freezing, preparing for death. A clear eye to eye look, a kind smile, the touch of a warm hand give rise to a deep emotional response. A person needs a person - it is here that you comprehend it in its entirety.
I remember one woman who, after lying down washing her hair - in a hospice this is a whole procedure with trays, jugs and towels - after the painstaking and attentive interaction of several volunteers over her, multiple kind, warm, supportive looks, finally decided to ask: “Will it hurt? " - and began to cry. At that moment it was very important for her to talk and cry about it.
I remember another woman, not very cultured, but honest and sincere. From a simple look in the eyes, a simple interest in her, she cried. It's hard to endure your leaving alone … At the last meeting, we both knew that we would never see each other - the catheter was filled with blood. She looked into my eyes and said: "I will remember you," I did not look away and answered: "And I will remember."
I remember my grandfather - he became mine in a month and a half in the hospice - who, after an hour of fussing over him, suddenly began to talk. We ate forbidden candies with liquor, smelled freshly picked flowers, sang. On the last day, he came to himself in fits and starts - brain cancer was rapidly eating away at reality. I lifted him up on the bed and opened the curtains. There was a stunning sunset outside the windows. He looked into the distance, smiled and stroked my hand gratefully. He was gone that night.
I remember … with light sadness and endless gratitude to everyone who passed through my heart during this time.
Special sincerity is born where the next day may not come. False prohibitions on the expression of feelings fly off. “I just wanted to hug you” - and here my grandmother, offended by her daughter who abandoned her, cries with relief and hugs me back.
This is our third conversation. Deep, for real. And only today she finally tells the story of their relationship and the very case when the offended daughter beat her in the chest with her fists, like a punching bag, and she, numb, could not even retreat.
Grandma has lung cancer. She sits on the bed around the clock, because it's hard to lie down - you suffocate. After our conversation, she changes - the face relaxes, breathing becomes even. Another minute - and we dream of a festive Christmas tree on her windowsill.
- What is your name? he asks with a frivolous hint. “Maria,” I say. The room smells of cigarettes. We have met many times already. Usually he greeted rudely and turned to the wall. Today I came on a whim, seeing that he was getting worse.
- Only ex-wives come to me. - How many are there? - Two. - Little. - Little? How many then? Well, if you say so … Suddenly, behind the feigned laxity and rudeness, a look full of moral search opens.
- Do you have children? - It's a difficult question. A painful silence hangs in the air. - Why difficult? Children are either there or not. A large tear suddenly rolls down from his long, beautiful eyelashes. The sobs come in waves. He spreads his arms wide, as if wanting to open his chest and rip out the mental pain that has been pressing him for years.
He's 45. He's dying of lung cancer. His youngest son crashed at 16. He cannot speak, he cannot forgive himself for this, he cries. - I must tell you everything from the very beginning …
When at a training in Systemic Vector Psychology you hear a recommendation to volunteer to someone who is worse off than you, at first you perceive it with great skepticism. At least that's how it was with me. Compassion? Why is it needed? I’m getting on pretty well. As Yuri Burlan says, this recommendation is so simple that many people prefer to ignore it.
As explained in the training, a person with a visual vector is initially born with fear for his life - not adapted to either live or kill, not even an insect, not adapted to exist in this wild and bloodthirsty world. The task of every visual person is to learn to transfer their fear from themselves to the outside - to learn to empathize, to love.
It is the conversion of one's enormous emotional amplitude from birth to others that gives the visual person a sense of joy and happiness from life. When this is not the case, the viewer suffers, suffers from fears, emotional stress, love addictions, cannot take place in pair relationships and in society.
What does it mean to turn feelings outward? It is not hysterical to demand “love me, love me,” and it is not emotional pressure, demanding attention to your feelings. To love is not to expect that they will love me in return and then I will be fine. To love is to enjoy the very ability to emotionally empathize, the very fact of giving your feelings to those who need them.
It is this ability that serves as the basis for creating happy paired relationships - built not on a painful addiction (I'm scared without him, I'm not scared when he is around), but on a happy sensual union.
This same ability serves as the basis for creating emotional ties with other people in society - namely, emotional ties bring us pleasure in communication today, which means joy of life.
Turning feelings outward - especially in the presence of various traumatic factors, including the prohibition on the manifestation of feelings (tears) in childhood, ridicule of early feelings, frightening situations in childhood - is a process that requires efforts, for everyone.
A great gift and a great opportunity for every visual person experiencing difficulties in expressing feelings is to go to someone who is worse than you, to put yourself in a situation where it is impossible not to feel compassion, and to develop the skill of sympathy, empathy, love.
First, you do it from a simple calculation - because it is necessary to stop being afraid. But gradually, day after day, peering and drawing closer to people, you begin to feel them, begin to empathize with them with all your heart, and already run to your beloved grandmother to put her Christmas tree on the windowsill.
Only when you do it for real, you understand how it is - to give your feelings, to love.