By Rosalee Simon
Emma would coax me to eat several small meals throughout the day, even if those meals only consisted
of a couple of crackers and a cup of green tea. “Green tea is the best,” she’d say. “It has healing
properties.” Little by little, I began to eat.
Emma would help me perform range
of motion exercises so I’d remain flexible and, slowly, I got some
of my strength back. She was very patient. She gave me terrific
massages with special “healing” oil that came from who knows where.
Of course, I’d smell like peanuts for the rest of the day but that
was a small price to pay for such luxury. My circulation improved.
She saw that I got plenty of rest and fresh air. We would go
“walking” through the neighborhood at least twice a day. She taught
me the proper way to breathe, increasing my oxygen intake and when
done right, I felt heady and dizzy all at the same time.
Emma had her own philosophy regarding diet, including never eating starch with protein, cutting out
all bread products and never, never eating anything that contained vinegar. Sandwiches were definitely
out! I’m sure that her choices weren’t based on any medically approved dietary study because she’d
change her mind from time to time, keeping things interesting. She’d state her latest dietary ideas
with such conviction that it was apparent she was trying desperately to help. She was trying to find
something that would make a difference, something that would make me better. I don’t know if she ever
knew it or not but she was that something.
Meditation was an important part of Emma’s therapy. She’d have me relax, breathe deeply and evenly,
and try to rid myself of all stress and tension. Then Emma would help me visualize my illness,
concentrating on each part of my body. I would imagine that a bright, white, “healing” light was
shining on me, making me feel better, giving me strength and inner peace. After awhile, I began to
Everything seems exaggerated at night. Worries are more pronounced, problems become unsolvable, and
pain gets worse. In the early morning hours, I’d cry quietly to myself. At first I was afraid I was
going to die, and then I was afraid I was going to live. That’s when Emma would come silently into my
room to comfort me. And even though she was partially hard of hearing, she’d always know when I needed
her. She’d massage my back and shoulders and tell me to have “faith in myself, that healing comes
from within”. She’d hold me in her arms so I could fight the fear that I would never again be well.
She’d stay with me so I wouldn’t feel alone and isolated. She convinced me, beyond all doubt, that
I had the power to heal myself, and so, I did.
After three months I was fully recovered. I began to take part in my life again and went back to doing
all the things I loved. Emma returned to her family in Lithuania. I love and miss her more than she
will ever know. I will always be grateful for her care, her love and my life.