A man born in 1948 visited me in July ’04.
He suffered from bursitis in his right shoulder, very painful in rotation and had been bothered by a stiff neck for years. The bursitis he had for the first time in ’94 during a volleyball match. Later he had to quit the club because his shoulder was too unstable.
He is of medium build, a soft looking man, well taken care of and he looked a bit insecure at the beginning of the interview. He is not the talking-type.
Sometimes he suffers from vertigo, mostly at the end of the day as if ‘his battery’ is empty, this since about 1980. (In ’75 he ran into a car.)
He has a responsible job in the construction industry. Stressful because of the deadlines which are governed by unexpected influences. This causes a painful pressure in his head with vertigo as soon as he leaves the job. A good night’s sleep relieves.
He likes physical activity and participates in many sports, like skating, biking, swimming (on holidays) and volleyball until he left the team in ’02.
His digestion is fine, as are his energy, appetite and sleep.
He has had a difficult time since the separation his wife initiated, he felt as if he was being gotten rid of unexpectedly. Once he could not restrain himself and became aggressive and abusive, like an "explosion". (They are together again now.) This feeling reminded him of his childhood, during that time he had to keep up with his elder brothers who took his toys and other things important to him. He fell cheated and deserted, he was unjustly punished and he would hide because nobody would listen to him. At school he was a very timid boy initially. His brothers protected him there but not at home. He used to swallow his anger with no way to get it out. “I still do keep control to prevent irresponsible deeds. Imagine that somebody kicks you…. I have to restrain myself. I don’t like violence and fighting. I did not serve in the Army. It was too much violence and hierarchic power politics. I’d had too much of that in my childhood. If you did not do what you were told by the elder brothers, you got beaten. Later I dominated my youngest brother. The feeling was as if being stuck and the reaction was to escape and hide.”
Ambitions? "I started as a carpenter and studied to be a building contractor. I still like the job.
My hobbies are all around the house like gardening, sports and being in contact with the children.”
He has 4 children all leading independent lives. There was a conflict with a daughter during the time he and his wife were separated and he felt powerless and stuck. It is very hard for him to express his feelings, “I don’t know how to do it. My mother always told us to be strong and keep going and my father never showed any appreciation. We were allowed to study though. He was no real father to me.”
He likes purple flowers and green bushes and the birch is his favourite tree.
Animals? Pets are too much work and he hates vermin.
Food? Eats everything apart from asparagus and Brussels sprouts.
No allergies, he has some psoriasis spots on his hand and a basalioma has been cut away from his forehead. He has worn glasses since he was 6. School went easily “you just had to do what you were told.”
Politics? He follows it by the news.
Church? “I had a Roman Catholic upbringing and did not have the guts to refuse to go to church in my childhood. If I had refused openly there would have been a physical punishment. My father was a little man, a small dictator who criticized everyone.”
He watches factual TV programs and likes to read detective novels.
The feeling of being stuck since his early years, was very typical of his story and his reaction, escape and hide and intensively be into sports made me think of the ANACARDIACEAE family.
But which one?
The timidity and acceptance of intimidation along with his feeling of powerlessness and avoiding violence and aggression looked like the themes of Anacardium orientalis, but this case had no sycotic quality to me, but more 2nd stage, like Baryta. I decided to give him ANACARDIUM OCCIDENTALIS MK.
In the books I found only the powerless state and symptoms of the more acute intoxication.
Follow up after 4 weeks
Within one week he felt really well. His left shoulder grew gradually better and his neck felt supple again. He was aware of his right elbow the 2nd week for 2 days and the last week an old knee injury was a bit painful. (In ’86 he injured his knee during a big skating tour and since then he had suffered for 2 years from bursitis.) No spells of vertigo (!) anymore. He is active in sports. He feels more open and speaks more openly about himself.
Dreams? He does not remember, never has bad dreams as far as he knows.
We did not make another appointment because he was content, he knew where to find me if necessary and because I knew some of his close family I could be informed indirectly.
Now 3 years later he is still going strong.
The family-theme of the ANACARDIACEAE
Suppression, feeling worthless and how to compensate this.
There is a need for physical exercise/motion, which ameliorates.
History of suppression and humiliation by a dictatorial parent and/or unpredictable aggression at home.
The way of compensation gives the clue to the stage or miasm.
Keywords: bursitis, anacardium occidentalis, timidity, powerlessness
This article was originally published in www.interhomeopathy.org