Sunday, February 1, 2009

An amazing tikkun (reparation of a negative or traumatic event)

Sometimes I can begin to understand the Master Of The Universe when awful things are set up in the world. The general philosophy is that it is our job to do the "fixing", but often we don't get the clarity to see which situations we can fix, or the tools how to fix it.

Tonight I had the honor to see and participate in my own tikkun. Many of you probably remember the horrendous trauma I experienced at the hand of my plastic surgeon. He removed the bandage from the donor leg (aka 'Scrapey') only 2 days after the surgery. He carelessly ripped off the bandage with no regard to me and the horrific pain he was causing me. I had no pain meds in me, and it was first thing in the morning. I screamed my head off and he didn't stop. He didn't wait until I'd get pain meds first, and he continued to cruelly and quickly rip it off. He then looked at it for one second and declared it fine, and left me and the nurses to fix the mess he left. I had to be bathed and re-bandaged which was horrific. It was *four hours* until I was comfortable and medicated out of pain. It is one of the intensely traumatic and vivid memories I have.

Tonight we had to remove the bandage from Azriel's chin. He had the cut glued together 4 days ago, and the directions were to wet the bandage and take it off. So, I wet it in the bath with warm water, and after he got pajamas on I tried to take it off with him lying in my lap. He screamed. I tried to comfort him, and he still screamed. I decided to stop, because I understood the traumatic feeling. I had a vivid flashback to my scenario. But, I also knew the doctor said that once the bandage is wet, it has to come off.

So I suggested we play a computer game. He sat on my lap while he and Dora The Explorer had a space ship adventure. The condition that he can have the game is that I can hold a warm washcloth on his chin the whole time. He agreed. Fifteen minutes later while he was still playing, I slowly removed the wash cloth. With the bandage thoroughly soaked, I tugged a bit at it, with no resistance from Wazi. It came off in a breeze, no crying... he hardly noticed.

He was so proud of himself that he was so brave, and I was so thankful for this opportunity for tikkun. If I hadn't been through a similar scenario (on a grander scale, but it doesn't matter. It was grand for him), I may have taken a firmer approach and just done it quickly, and comforted the crying afterward by saying "it's over, no big deal! See, that wasn't so hard!" When indeed, it was hard for him.

Hashem taught me real compassion, and it spans to big and little souls alike. My ability to be attuned to other people's pain and validating it is a gift from this NF experience. It also will help me be a better doula.

Thank you, Gd, for the gifts that are born from the darkness.

1 comment :

  1. Sarah,
    That's a great achievement! Kol Hakavod!