I was hard at work, stuck in the computer, dealing with the endless admin. The phone rang, and it was a relief to be distracted from the ranks of numbers.
“Hello? Is that Dr Edward?” she asked. Her voice seemed familiar.
“Yes, it is,” I replied. “How can I help you?”
“Well, you’ve seen our Burmese girl a few times, when she had bad teeth, most recently. She’s been really sick and in the hospital for a week- she got terribly constipated, and had to have some enemas, and be in on a drip, we thought we were going to lose her, to be honest. She’s always had a bit of trouble in the toilet department, but we really didn’t think anything too much of it. Anyway, she’s home again, but she’s just not bounced back. She’s still on daily treatment with laxatives. We were wondering if there might be anything alternative you could do to help her feel better?”
“We could certainly try some acupressure sessions, and see how she responds?”
“That sounds great. When can you come?”
I went back to the screen and sorted out an appointment time. Then, a couple of days later, I drove through a glorious blue skied winters day, the valleys and tangled hills of trees all vibrant, glowing with life through my windscreen. I pulled up to the house, and was welcomed in.
“She doesn’t look great, does she?” I said when I saw her, lying in the sun on the verandah. Her coat was dull, and she looked like she was feeling out of sorts. “How’s she going since she’s been back home?”
“She’s eating, and drinking, but even with the daily lactulose treatment, she’s still only going to the toilet every 3 days or so,” she told me. “How do you think acupressure will help her?”
“I’ll select a set of acupressure points that will help her life force energy, or chi, circulate better in her body. With constipation like this, she likely has a yin deficiency, which leads to too much fire in the large intestine, and then it all dries out too much, so you get constipation. Also, I’ll work with her craniosacral system, to get that in a healthy state.”
“Ok then, I do hope it will help her!”
The cat had skulked off into a hidden corner and had to be extracted. Before too long she was sitting on my lap, gently restrained. I’d spent a little while working ou the best points for her, and began the session. She gave me a look, as only cats can, and started doing her best (in a quiet way) to escape from my grasp. She tried this, and then she tried that, and finally bounded off my lap, but I caught her in mid-leap, and placed her gently back down. She gave in, with ill grace and an occasional test to see if I’d relaxed enough for her to make a bid for freedom. I noticed after a while that her eyes relaxed fractionally, though she never really settled down on my lap. After stimulating all of the points, I then worked with her craniosacral system, which was seriously out of wack. When I was finished I stopped holding her, and she jumped down, giving me another look as she went. She sat in the sun, and I could see that there was a new shine to her coat after the session, showing that her chi, or life force energy, was now circulating right out through her skin and coat.
“When do you need to see her again?” her mum enquired.
“Ideally I’d like to see her weekly for a little while, and see how she responds, and then space out the visits to longer intervals. She may come to a point where she doesn’t need regular sessions, or she may need a session every month or six weeks to maintain her health and well-being. Keep an eye on her for me, and let me know what changes you notice…”
*** A week later ***
“Wow, she looks so much better than last week,” I said. I could see straight away that she was brighter, and her coat was som much shinier and vital.
“Yes,” her dad said. “She’s almost back to her normal self, she’s been more active, playful, and has gone to the toilet every two days, which is a significant improvement. Still not daily, like she mostly used to go, but way better than before your visit with her last week. And we even had to reduce the dose of the laxative to every second day, because she was getting a bit of diarrhea.”
“That’s great news!” I replied. “That’s a very good response. Could you grab her for me? And I’ll give her today’s session.”
Before long she was on my lap. I noticed that there were no glares this morning and that her attempts to escape were much less. Her eyes softened much more, and much more quickly than the first session. Before long I felt her body get heavier and heavier on my lap as she relaxed. By the end of the half hour of working on her acupressure points, and then with her craniosacral system, she was a warm puddle on my knee, and even gently purring. I had to remove her from my lap, a big change from the first visit!
I drove off, thinking to myself how well this little cat had responded to the work I’d done, feeling warm and happy inside despite the cold wintery day.