I thought of writing about this event to my blog for a quite a long time. Some how I lost touch with it. Today, suddenly this has popped in my mind. I decided to do the writing immediately as I don’t want to let this experience of mine go out of my awareness. I feel an urge to share it with my readers.
I remember that day very well
It was Tuesday afternoon. I was in my consulting room and noticed that an appointment was booked for a little girl of 10 years old. I finished my regular mail checking and other administrative work in my office before she arrived for her consultation.
A little girl with her uncle
She was brought to me by her uncle as she was remaining sad and not communicating enough with her family members. She spent time alone and would talk only when it was extremely necessary for getting some work done. Her uncle also told me that she would gaze out of her bedroom’s window for a long. Sometimes she would cry for a long and was difficult to help at that time.
She wasn’t always like that. She had witnessed her parents dying in a vehicular accident. They were returning back home from a holiday break and met with an accident. She was the only survivor of that incidence.
Face to face with her
When her uncle told me about this event, I started having uneasiness and discomfort myself. I took deep breaths and then asked her uncle to gently bring her inside for a talk. Something I felt was not usual for me. I realized that I was getting trapped and carried away by uncomfortable feelings.
I remembered the almighty and initiated a talk with her.
It was quite expected that she did not readily open up and share her feelings. She responded to my general questions with minimum of words. I think she might also have noticed that I was uncomfortable and feeling choked at times.
I gathered courage, thought about my role to play there and started becoming more comfortable slowly thereafter.
I told her about my kid. I talked with her how much I love my kid, and also expressed to her that I was eager to know her more and befriend with her. I talked about my hobbies and asked if she could share any of them with me.
I talked about her school, neighborhood, friends and television. I noticed that she was gradually feeling comfortable in talking with me, and I also felt that I was gaining myself back in control.
Bringing the trauma on board
With being extremely gentle and curious to know how she would react, I brought in the topic of her traumatic experience. I was surprised to see that she could then easily talk about how everything happened. I felt more confidence by thinking that I had made a good rapport and provided her the space to open up.
A big question
Suddenly she interrupted herself and looked into my eyes and told me, “Can I ask you a question, doctor?” Not prepared for her sudden shift from expressing her experience to looking for an answer, I fumbled. Gaining control back I said, “Why not! Sure.”
She threw one of the biggest questions we all encounter at times in our lives. She asked,
“Why has God done this to me? What is my fault?”
I soon realized that her little mind was not able to comprehend why the almighty would bring such an experience into her life. She was also upset wondering whether she had done anything wrong that made God to punish her.
This happens with many
I come across many (including myself sometimes) wondering and complaining why God has done something bad to them. The argument that goes on inside people’s head at that time is generally looking for what wrong they might have done that has brought negative or traumatic life event into their experiences. However, this time the question of that little girl got hooked inside my head. I started wondering too, why God would do that to such a cute, innocent little girl.
How can I help her?
How can I help her find meaning in her experience?
How can I help her build a perspective that heals her?
These thoughts ran through my mind. Once again discomfort was setting inside me. I could perceive a knot in my stomach and dryness in my mouth.
Insight was provided
I consider myself very much blessed as I was provided with the insight to share with her, at a crucial time, that helped her find the meaning she was looking for.
I told her that we all come here (in this world) to learn lessons. We are provided with carious circumstances to deal with so that we can learn what we are supposed to learn. Sometimes the events are very painful for us to live with. This pain takes us on a path of blaming, feeling victimized and/or guilty. These feelings stop us from getting the right message hidden behind the event.
I talked with gently and said, “You were supposed to learn to grow and live alone. God does not punish anyone (yes, this is my fundamental belief that I shared with her). God provides opportunities in the form of difficulties to learn from.”
I also helped her see that she was lucky to have uncle and aunt who were very much understanding and supportive. God also provides us with support system to take hold on during our difficult time. The almighty waits patiently till we find the needed support and the meaning behind our difficulties. Our job is to thank him, learn and grow.
I am thankful to her
I did not think whether what I was telling her would help her understand her situation. I just spoke. It came very naturally to me. I felt better and realized that I also needed this understanding for making sense of certain experiences of my life. I expressed whatever came to my mind with the intention to help her see the reality clearly and also maintain faith in the almighty.
I perceived that she felt better. She cried and regained herself back in few minutes. Her uncle was called inside. She hugged him. She then smiled and expressed the need to go home and connect with her close friend. We departed.
Now when I recollect that day, I consider myself fortunate. I look at the event with a realization that it occurred because both of us had to learn something out of it. The insight was delivered by me but was awakened by her.
God bless her.
Dr. Sudeep Shroff
Sharing insights and awareness