If the body remembers, as it does, what does it have to say? How do we hear it? Do we?
In the last few days I’ve experienced an unassailable sadness, thick and dense at one minute, slippery and faint, teasing, at another. Then vanishing, only to return as if never absent. So much so I burst into tears when I saw the doctor, a gracious, humane, brilliant man with whom it’s easy to talk. Yet all I could say, repeat, was I don’t know what to say, what’s happening.
Having a committed listener such as my doctor, unobtrusive, very present, itself creates a healing space, is such a space, a container where the boundaries of space expand and contract as need be, but always remain, there and yet open.
When people are present to each other, they begin to hear themselves, the other, differently, perhaps even in new and undashioned ways.
My visit was important not only in the medical exchange, but also in the way I heard and felt my sadness. Felt my shaking hands, the quiet, insistent flow of tears that I’d held back earlier in the day, zoning out. Sadness had swelled, almost choking me as I choked it back.
Silent places speak too. Have sounds, shufflings. Shadows. Edgings. Are rough,smooth, Indistinct.
Pare raw. And in my case here, felt like a burning in the throat, at times, cold, insinuating. I could smell burning oil, tar, hear other men’s voices, Ayr and full, callous.