Monday, September 24, 2012

Virginia - Visions



     This machinima records part of a talk I had with Virginia in her nursing home.  In it she describes a few of her recent visions while at the end she mentions her "left".  I have talked to her many times about her right side / left side battle with herself, but I realize that it probably makes no sense whatsoever just by listening to Virginia in these tapes.   So I will attempt to explain it a bit here.
     Virginia has always had a struggle between two sides of her body.  Both vying for dominance.  She is naturally right handed and performs many of her daily tasks as any right handed person would do.  At one point her left side began to take control away from her right side.  So rather than using her right hand to pick up her coffee cup as she is accustomed to doing, her left hand will take it.  It likely doesn't sounds strange unless you decide to pay attention to how your own body instinctively reacts to routine events.  And then try to reverse it.  I am sure it is a very odd experience.
     Often Virginia would connect the actions of the left side of her body with causing real world consequences.  So for example.  If her left shoe was too tight or maybe her hair clip, then, as she notices the tightness, her phone rings.  She finds the phone only to discover nobody responds.  The phone rings again and it is the same situation.  She loosens her shoe and the phone stops ringing.        Now for you or I who live in a very calm rational world we will scoff and say "well that is just coincidence".  My goal in this project was not to rationalize or champion Virginias world, as I am not living in nor a party to it.  I am cataloging her perspective and helping Virginia to explain what she goes through.  In her world not only are her interpretations reasonable, but they also help to make sense of her situation thus allowing her to get through her days.  Remember that she is completely alone with these experiences.  Virginia hears voices, sees visions and has found herself, mouth open, speaking words she has no intention of saying.  To Virginia there is a battle going on for control of her mind and body.  One side feels foreign and disengaged while the other side is her.  If she can function on a daily basis using elements of her real self as opposed to what she considers the left side, then her world follows a more calm and rational course.
     Once the left side comes forward to interfere then there are often small but noticeable side effects that Virginia has recorded for many many years.  Here are a few other possible side effects of using her left.  She opens the front door to feed the feral cats and when using her right hand they are all well behaved and there are no problems.  If she discovers her left hand takes the scoop of cat food then perhaps the cats bite and scratch her or run into her house meowing for days.  If her left hand touches the radio then she suddenly can't get any stations for a while.. just static, or suppose she turns on the tap with her left hand for a drink of water and at that precise moment a car pulls into her driveway and a man comes out and begins to bang on her front door terrifying her.  Our reality is well behaved children lined up quietly to go into class where hers is recess time and chaos. 

6 comments:

paragonremodeling said...

Awesome post.

Beth said...

Ants to the the peonies... they need the catalyst to bloom. I have listened to you tapes of Virginia and she has a remarkable sense of being. I too, like Virginia, had lived a life of being handed everything and then nothing. I understood what she said about feeling stupid and then the day to day witnessing of her life alone. I can tell she felt satisfaction with sharing her stories with you,a remarkable relationship. My best to Virginia and you... the ant:)

Penumbra Carter said...

I didn't mean to directly compare myself to Virginia, by life is pretty good. What I am saying is that she has insights that are quite graphic and the verbal buffer zone that can exist between the mind and mouth is not there. I found her conversations very enlightening even though she has had a difficult time.

Bryn Oh said...

I knew what you meant Pen. It is refreshing speaking with Virginia as she really does give her direct views on things and as you said there is no buffer zone. She inspired me and I feel quite lucky to have come across her. It has enriched my life.

Lizbeth Lavecchia said...

this was a beautiful experience. I love this story, and it's quite remarcable how this lady coped and managed to go on. How she explained herself things and how she recorded them. My favourite from this ride was the letter describing Ichabod. That realy moved me. Thank you, congratulations and keep up the good work

Miele Tarantal said...

I started the Virginia Alone tour without the benefit of reading this - and I have to say the beginnings I experienced really effectively conveyed what you've said here, the way you've organized it and presented it. I'm looking forward to going back and continuing... it is something to be savored. :)