The Healing Power of the WAB…
Sharon Cohen O’Neill
Valentines day, after 18 years of marriage, I am alone. To relieve my loneliness I volunteered to baby-sit for my grandchildren, Derek, 3 years old, and Shannon, 10 months old. During Shannon’s afternoon nap Derek showed me how to heal a wounded heart.
I felt both physical and emotional exhaustion that day. When Shannon went down for her afternoon nap, I stretched out on the playroom floor surrounded by a multitude of toys.
Derek walked over and peered down at my face. He asked, “Nana, are you taking a nap too? “No,” I replied, “Nana feels real bad right now.” With a concerned look he hovered inches from my face and said, “Where do you hurt? I placed my hand over my heart. “I hurt right here.” “Well, Nana, Derek exclaimed with a grin, “I’ll fix it with a wab.”
“A wab, what’s a wab?” His smile grew bigger as he picked up his favorite racecar and gently placed it on my chest. He continued to blanket me with all his beloved toys, cars, truck, little people, blocks, and a fire engine, all arranged with love and care. He told me that you never put a wab on your face as he encircled my head with his softest stuffed animals and tucked me in with the remaining toys.
Derek stood up tall and erect as he surveyed his handiwork and then fine-tuned the placement of the toys. He retrieved Shannon’s small blanket abandoned in the corner of the room and spread it out beside my head. He then curled up on the blanket, sighed and cuddled closer to me. His face was so close I could barely keep it in focus. I asked him, ”What are we doing now?” “I’m curling up into the smallest ball, just like Chi- Chi (the family ‘s beloved Chihuahua). I’ll stay with you until the wabs make you better Nana.” “How do they work,” I asked? “Well, Nana, Derek explained, wabs have cords that reach inside you and take out your hurt part.”
After ten minutes, Derek announced that the wabs were done. And you know what, I did feel better. Derek, at three years old, understood the value of sharing. He engulfed me in the toys that he treasured so much. His act of love took away my sadness and my pain. How profound and simple that gentle sharing and concern can heal a wounded heart.
Sharon Cohen O’Neil is a Registered Nurse specializing in End-of- Life Care. She received her Bachelor of Science and Master of Arts in Psychology and Holistic Studies at Lesley University, Cambridge MA. Sharon is completing a series of paintings and stories inspired by the images she encountered during deep meditation.