Clinical Cases

A Case of Snail in Progress

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The following sensation case is meant to show the process of analysis in sensation, but it has not yet come to its resolution.

Anamnesis

Patient : D. K.

Date of birth: 03.2.1964.

Marital status: single (no children)

Profession: translator

( H= Homeopath, P=Patient )

 

H: What kind of discomfort do you experience?

P: I don’t have any special [discomfort], I have some myoma, which either objectively or subjectively is not a problem. The myoma is relatively big, 6.5 – 8.5 cm, I can feel it with my fingers, but it’s not causing me any problems, type of bleeding. My gynecologist says that there is no reason for surgery, and that the myoma will not cause problems, because it’s external. I have some preclimacteric problems, and pain in my stomach. I had extremely painful and heavy menstrual periods, and they always varied in : 25, 28, 30 days. They were always the same, never regular, sometimes one period in three weeks, in 35, 36, days.

My gallbladder is weak, I have problems with greasy food, it makes me sick. I can’t eat salty food, too. I have more problems with depression, lack of energy, I can do so many things, but I need someone to encourage me. From an early age, I’m not happy, everything in my life was too difficult for me. I didn’t have cheerfulness and enthusiasm. I‘m too serious a person who has too much responsibility. I rigidly understand my obligations. What more could I say to you? I’m a sad person, at least that’s what I think of myself. I have a problem with keeping water in my body, and emotions, anger. I have reactions to everything (shows HG (hand gesture) of fused fists in area of solar plexus), I’m multiplying everything. I’m refining my experiences against me and obsessing myself with various things. It’s wearing me out, generally I become upset over trifles.

H: Go on please.

P: I don’t feel that I have the joy of life that I really can look forward to, I’m concerned, everything is too serious, sadness is overwhelming me (shows HG as a moment ago). Now, I remember moments when I liked playing in the yard; for example one day I made balls of soil, I had about 4 or5 years and I remember that sadness overwhelmed me. I had a nice childhood. I had a grandmother. We weren’t short of anything, but I was a loner. I had two or three friends; I didn’t like a lot of children in the crowd. I never easily assembled a friendship. Now I learned to pretend. I haven’t had any reason for sadness, it just overwhelmed me while I was playing. I don’t have that joy of life that keeps me going through it.

In our vineyard neighborhood lived one granny. As a child she was sent to serve one rich family. That woman fascinated me, she was so full of life and happiness. She takes soil in her hands, then an apple and looks at it with so much happiness. Nothing can compare with that, not even intellect. And I was always so shy, an introverted person. Now, it manifests in a different way. It’s more from inside, you bring with yourself every single feeling which passes by you. I’m not a fighter, and I’m not persistent.

My school was relatively easy, university as well, but I didn’t really bother for anything. I choose university by inertia; I knew that I will graduate. I’m not a type of person who is persistent. Luckily I love this profession.

I don’t have any ambition, successes don’t make me happy, when you don’t put effort in. Then, I hardly quarrel with someone, and if something bothers me, I keep it for myself. I despise myself because I don’t fight for my dignity. I withdraw, but don’t reconcile with that person. Something is playing here constantly (shows same HG). What I feel the most is that I’m an introverted person; my mind absorbs everything. I find it difficult to seek help.

H: What bothers you the most?

P: I find myself a boring person, people get annoyed by me, and I try to keep a distance, because I don’t want to be ashamed. I withdraw because I don’t want to reveal myself. I feel compressed (same HG), and I don’t know to express myself in the right way. Everything about myself annoys me. I’m extremely unhappy. In fact, I’m constantly running away from something.

H: Explain to me the distance you are trying to keep?

P: Even when I’m with my close friends, for example, I avoid appearing at a party. I make up an excuse. I can’t relax. I’m always on my guard when I’m with people. When someone realizes how fragile I really am, I feel afraid of being exposed. In fact I feel afraid of being ashamed. It’s unhappiness and discontent. That’s from my home. My mom used to tell me: “Don’t wear it, it’s not right, do not say that…”

I don’t have that: “You are what you are”. It’s easier for me to retreat and draw in a snail house. Not long ago, when I was in Wien, my little cousin said to me: “You are quite like a snail”.

H: What part of that connected you to a snail?

P: That is how you redraw in your space, how you conceal yourself, and disappear. I always envy people who are in entertaining and who are cheerful. That completely blocks me. I passed the driver’s lessons in ’89, but I don’t drive. Once, my friend who is a driving instructor, wanted to see how I drive. He said : “You drive better than your sister, but you are conceited. You don’t like if somebody beeps you. You want to drive the best in the world. But that cannot happen”. I will not fight, I give up easily, I’m fainthearted. He says: “You are conceited, you don’t want your car to break down on a crossroad, but that might happen sometimes.

H: Imagine if that happened. What would you do?

P: I would panic, cry, but somehow I would solve the problem. I would leave the car on a parking lot, and never drive again.

H: Describe one situation when you give up.

P: A thousand times I didn’t go to the party for any reason. I don’t feel like going, I give up easily. It’s expected from everyone to be in a good mood, but i just pack my things and go. I feel anxiety, and I start to panic: “You are so annoying, you don’t fit in, you’re not a person you should be. Sorrow grabs me, if I could only sink in to an armchair and disappear, I would. I can not accept this situation rationally. I keep thinking that I’m expected to pull something. I have a feeling, that people see my desire for escaping.

H: And what if you couldn’t escape?

P: The wish for getting away keeps going through my head. Even when I go to the seaside, I expect too much. Some people naturally shine; I don’t see that shine in myself, I do not recognize it. I don’t bother anymore… like I’m completely exhausted and worn out. Everything is so empty for me, like I already died but I have not been buried yet. When I was 39, I decided to commit suicide. I even planned: where and how.

H: What was the main reason?

P: Those days my salary was 100 e, but I was paying a flat rent 150 e. I had a feeling of worthlessness, hopelessness. I was subtenant for 25 years. I was constantly moving. I could barely endure all of that. I came up with the idea: “I will commit suicide”. I didn’t have any more strength, I felt totally worthless and all of the sudden, we sold a peace of our land. My grandma said : “Let’s sell it, I cannot look at how you’re struggling”. I wouldn’t say that alone, neither would my father, but my sister wanted that.

H: Describe your feeling when you decided to do that.

P: Hopelessness, worthlessness, when you move four times in two months, and go with a suitcase and computer to a friend’s house while they are on vacation. And again with a suitcase in a little room with high grades, like a homeless person, that has nothing but a suitcase.

H: How does it feel when you’re a homeless person?

P: It feels horrible. As a rag, as a completely incapable person, everyone is planning something, you’re the worst of all. All of them got somewhere, and you nowhere, like alms. I’m going here, my things are somewhere there. You can do nothing about it. It’s the feeling of being lost. It took a long time and I was homeless about 25 years. You are staying alone on bleakness, you don’t belong to anyone, you are on the field, and wind will blow you.

H: Go on, it’s great.

P: Complete nakedness, you don’t know what to catch, all of them arrived somewhere and you’re not anywhere, complete anonymous, from the bench in the park – as a homeless person I felt that way.

H: What was your feeling when you moved into your own space?

P: Oh… feeling of complete freedom. That feeling solved all my problems, that terrible problem, which was unsolvable… that feeling that you have no home and no place to live in…it’s my oasis, it’s my snail’s…I think that I always can make money to survive.

H: You said snail’s…?

P: Snail’s house, it’s something mine, and all the problems can be solved. Everything else seems solvable to me. Then you can imagine my sister’s and my feeling when the company on 1 May said that we have to move out. The lawyer who was paid for his work, didn’t complete the paperwork. However, everything was resolved quickly.

H: How did you feel?

P: I was very angry, like, can this be happening to me again? For years my sister and I went every weekend to see my dad and grandmother. It lasted 15 years. We used to cook, we used to clean. It was a strange thing for me, we didn’t have to do that. We could simply take a maid to help us with housework, not to chase every weekend there.

H: Do you have any hobby, things you enjoy doing?

P: I loved to read, in bouts. Before I really loved to argue with certain people, and now I have no reason to do that. I have a cynical attitude toward myself, and my own life. I really love theatre, cinema, movies…

H: Which movie gained your attention?

P: Paris, Texas

H: What about that movie was interesting?

P: That slowness, and lasting.

H: Slowness and lasting?

P: I’m impressed when someone makes such a good movie, which is slow and at the same time not empty. It’s not superficial, it’s slow and difficult. It caries some of my sensibility, sadness and idleness of life. It seems to me as a reality, not as optimism. I always wanted something, but was never brave, so it was easy for me to have a contemptuous attitude, if I couldn’t do something. That is my defense, contemptuous attitude towards something I couldn’t reach. I despised girls with three wishes in their lives. I was too serious, all of them seemed stupid to me because they were falling in love…. like only suffering and heaviness have sense in our lives. So I thought that before, and wasted my energy and life.

H: Do you have any recurring dreams? Did any of them leave a special impression on you?

P: I often dream that I’m completely naked in public, and I want to run away, but I can not escape. I’m frantically looking for something to wear. Because I think that my legs are fat and ugly, as a little girl I dreamed that I‘m running away from something, but my legs are heavy, and someone is reaching me.

H: Describe me the feeling from those dreams.

P: The feeling was horrible…I’m spinning around, and don’t know what to do, I even wake up (shows HG of fused fists in area of stomach). I’m trying to hide, as I know that I was dressed, and the feeling that it suddenly happened. Usually I woke up in panic.

H: And then?

P: I feel great relief when I realize that I was dreaming.

H: Have you had a feeling similar that one in real life?

P: I always had a panic of public performing. Once there was a symposium where I had to translate simultaneously. I reacted good in that situation, although it was difficult, when a confused guy appeared and interrupted me in the middle of my sentence. Panic caught me ( same HG), I had a feeling that everything went from me, like whole energy is going to leak.

H: Describe that more clearly.

P: Like I don’t have strength in my arms (again the same HG), I had a numbness in my tongue, as some energy is leaking from me…

H: Describe that feeling.

P: (same HG, but now she expands her fists in area of solar plexus). It’s like a sudden stop, and then I get a feeling that’s something inside of me is spilling, and also like spilling something from my hands, and a feeling of numbness here (shows her belly), like it’s spilling diffusely, like some kind of panic, like I’m going to lose my breath in a moment, like a electric shock surging through my body. It’s not like cramping. It happens to me from stress I cramp up here (shows area between her neck and shoulder), or I drive my nails into my fists. I wake up in that state, that’s usually about 2 15 in the morning. Usually when I am tense I jump in panic – if I gave someone a good assurance. In the morning I think it’s senseless. But be it a small or big problem, I refine and refine it. When I’m emotionally hurt, and when I’m in emotional stress, then I get that feeling. Whatever it is, I delay and delay, then my sister begins. At that moment I can begin to work. There is no chance that I won’t get finished. I always need someone to inspire me. I can do anything, but I’m not an initiator. My chief once said to me: “You are softly mixed, you always withdraw”.

H: You withdraw?

P: I don’t have an appearance, I’ll do anything but it’s easy for other people to defeat me. I think that somebody else is stronger than me. Even if I think I’m right, I let it go, to avoid a conflict. It came to me, not long ago we were in Hungary. My colleague, who is ambitious, she was supposed to translate. I think that I know a little bit a Hungarian. In the end, everything was on me, because she didn’t even know to read a name of a street. But she acted like she knew.

H: Do you have any fears?

P: Of bugs, that have “those” feet, butterflies, and of that big mosquito. I have a fear of narrow spaces, I never could go under the bed when I was a child. When I was a little, I would go under the bad with half of my body, and I quickly get out. I need my space, I couldn’t live in a studio, in only one room. I need to have a room that’s intended only for me, and where nobody is going to enter. I don’t like to live with anybody else, I like to have my own space. I ‘ve always locked myself up in my own room. When I was 15 years old, my mom once kept me from going out. I went to my room, turned the music on, and the only important thing for me was to close the door. My mom came too see if I was alive.

H: Do you have any other fear.

P: A fear of something closed (the same HG),squeeze, pressure. I can not take the pressure, when something hampers me, and I hamper myself the most. I keep everything (HG, of fused fists in the area of stomach). I have a feeling that I need space. I only fear that I will not have enough space, and that is not logical, because our house was big.

H: You said that you hamper yourself.

P: I really loved to sing, but no one to hear me. I wasn’t brave… if someone caught me in activity like this one I was so ashamed. I played the piano, and I really enjoyed it, but I was afraid of public performing. A few days ago I realized that I didn’t even allow myself to choose a man, and suffered for years, and that was enough for me. And then you get chosen by someone who is not even close to you, and so you despise yourself. I always had completely not interesting, inconspicuous friends. I experience myself as a person who doesn’t deserve anything.

H: What about your connection with animals?

P: Completely nice, they love me and I love them. I ‘m not afraid of them. I prefer cats, then dogs. I don’t have animals because it’s a huge obligation, and I would feel sorry because they would suffer if I’m not around.

H: Why do you find cats more interesting than dogs?

P: Somehow they belong to themselves, they have their attitude. It was interesting to me to compete with our cat. The dog is absolutely faithful, and the cat is independent and does what she wants. I adore horses. It horrible to me to eat lamb…. I always cry.

H: Are you sensitive to cold or are you warm-blooded?

P: I have a circulation problem. I am constantly cold. It more bothers me when it’s cold in the room…. I convulse. I don’t like coldness in the area where I live.

H: Is there something that you really love to eat?

P: I can not stand greasy food, garlic, or onion. I can not stand salt, neither. I love pasta, but it disagrees with my stomach. I could live as a vegetarian. I love fruits and vegetables. And about drinks, I force myself to drink water, even if I don’t have need. I drink wine occasionally, otherwise I avoid alcoholic drinks.

H: If you don’t have anything more to say to me, we are finished.

P: I must be annoying .

H: Of course you’re not.

Note: next day the patient brought me a drawing which she randomly scribbled at work. She commented: “I draw curves and flowers.”

ANALYSIS

Focus of the case and themes that are repeated

The main physical complaint is myoma, located at the outside of the uterus. It’s relatively big and it can be felt over the abdominal area. Also, pre-climacteric problems, and how she says her periods have always been irregular. She had painful and copious periods. She has discomfort and intolerance to greasy and salty food, which make her sick.

– The patient stated that depression is her main problem, lack of energy, enthusiasm and cheerfulness.

– The patient has a problem with keeping “everything”: water, emotions, anger, and here she shows HG in the area of solar plexus for the first time.

– From an early age she has a feeling that sadness is overwhelming her. She even remembers situations such as this one. She is fascinated by the people who have a life of joy.

– She needs someone to “move”, encourages her. She withdraws from society and from different situations, when she feels that something is expected from her, but she is not satisfied with that.

– She creates a distance, because she doesn’t want to “expose” herself. She has a fear of that and she says: It’s easier for me to retreat and draw into a snail’s house. At this point for the first time, I have idea for remedy, but I’m cautious, and I’m waiting for confirmation.

– Withdrawal and fear of being “exposed”, affects the patient’s communication with familiar and unfamiliar people.

– A main factor in this case is maybe describing the period when after 25 years of homeless life, she decides to commit suicide. As she says, the reason is complete exhaustion from such a life. Here by describing how she felt: hopeless, worthless, and then through delusions: as a last homeless person, everyone got somewhere, and you are nowhere, left on bleakness, like you don’t belong to anyone, and anything can blow you away – we get to a sensation of remedy – snail. Then when I asked her how she felt after moving into the apartment, the patient continues saying: It’s my oasis, my…snail’s home, it’s something of mine.

– The feelings of the patient are that after solving the problem with her living space, all other problems are minor. She even says: I will always earn enough money to survive. It’s clear here, the position of her own space, the cottage. She puts it before one of the basic instincts – a need for food. Here I confirm an idea of a remedy, and I search for confirmation in other areas.

– The patient has repeated dreams from her childhood, of finding herself completely naked in public, and desperately searches for something to cover herself. And then she runs but it’s working for her, and then her legs are heavy, and someone reaches her. When she talks about her dreams, she repeats the same HG. Here I find confirmation for a homeopathic remedy – snail.

– When I asked her if she has the feeling of the dream in real life, the patient describes a fear of public appearance, and the specific situation through which she describes the sensation.

– The patient through her description of her fears, mentions a fear of narrow spaces, where as a child she couldn’t get under the bed, just halfway and she quickly gets out.

Here I find an analogy between the claustrophobic feeling of a remedy from mollusks, and the feeling of the patient that has followed her from her childhood.

– And through her favorite film, she confirms the feeling. ,The patient says: slowness, lasting, slow but not empty, he is slow and heavy, and carries my sensibility.

– My task is to come to a decision about the most similar homeopathic remedy from subfamily – gastropods – snail.

KINGDOM

I think that in this case you can see subkingdom more clearly than kingdom, and because of the specificity of the subkingdom of mollusks, arguments for the hanimal kingdom – Animalia, are less conspicuous than the usual ones. Topics of the animal kingdom which appear in the case are:

    • the need for private space(withdrawal into space that belongs just to her,” I must have a room for myself”)
    • despises herself (“I despise myself, because I don’t fight for my dignity, I experienced myself as a person who doesn’t deserve anything”)
    • she hates herself (“everything about myself I find annoying”)
    • division of herself (“I withdraw, but I’m not OK with that”)
    • contradiction of will (“I try to keep my distance – I don’t know how to express myself in the right way”)
    • domination and inferiority(“I always envy persons who are popular, who are carrying cheerfulness”)
    • connection with the source (“it’s easier for me to withdraw and get into a snail’s house”)

SUBKINGDOM

Subkingdom : Mollusks, class – Gastropode

Arguments for subkingdom – Mollusks are:

    • withdrawal , drawing (“I withdraw and draw”)
    • the rest of the world is on the outside (“I keep the distance, I withdraw because I don’t want to expose myself”)
    • she goes out of reach (“it’s easier for me to withdraw and draw into a snail’s house’)
    • she loses joy of life, liveliness,(“I’m not cheerful, I had no optimism, enthusiasm”)
    • division of herself (“I do not care – I guess I expect too much”)
    • claustrophobia (“ I have a fear of narrow spaces”)
    • duality – on the outside it is dangerous, in the shell is claustrophobic (“it’s easier for me to withdraw – as a child I never could get under a bed”)

Class of snails – Gastropoda

Arguments for:

    • more action of withdrawal into snail’s house (instead of opening – “I withdraw and draw into snail’s house”)
    • withdrawing, drawing (“I withdraw”)
    • out of reach (“I have my guard, I keep a distance”)
    • occasionally movable ( “I need someone to move me, then I keep going”)
    • keep, keeping (“I have a problem with keeping everything: water, emotions, anger”)

Homeopathic Remedy

Homeopathic remedy which is prescribed is – Helix pomatia or Burgundy snail. Potency is 1 M.

About the source of the homeopathic remedy:

    • Vineyard snail ,Helix pomatia, is a European snail. The shell is creamy white to light brownish. This snail has a body length of about 10 cm(4 in.), and a shell’s length is about 5 cm(2 in.).
    • Snail’s head is separated from his foot, and in head are: mouth, eyes and one or two pairs of tentacles. The foot is the muscular part of the snail’s body, and it allows the snail to move. The thickened, last part of the foot, is used to close holes in the shell – while the snail is drawing his foot into it.
    • The respiratory organs are the lungs. The peripheral nervous system consists of sensory neurons called ganglia, and nerves connecting them to each other and to the central nervous system. Snails are hermaphrodites.
    • Snails feed on plant.
    • Gastropods have an open circulatory system and the transport fluid is hemolymph.
    • There are two phases of “position”: hibernation (winter) and estivation (summer). The first is used to survive the cold weather periods, and the other one to survive periods of heat and drought.

Arguments for choosing this homeopathic remedy:

The energy matrix of humans at some point of existence changes into non-human. That manifests through symptoms, and through changes in the patient’s condition. From the physical to the mental level, the patient tells us about the specific source of her own homeopathic remedy:

    • the patient does not have cheerfulness and enthusiasm, she is shy and withdrawn
    • she says: I withdraw, but I’m not OK with that
    • what I feel the most is closure, I absorb everything
    • I withdraw not to expose myself
    • I feel squeezed, I don’t know how to express myself
    • I have a fear of being exposed
    • it easier for me to withdraw and draw into my snail’s house
    • if I could just disappear, to sink into some hole
    • frantically is going through my head how to run away
    • I always have the strength to go through life, but I don’t have the will and motivation
    • like a homeless person, you change your home for small rooms
    • everyone got somewhere, and you are lost, you are nowhere
    • you are alone on a bleakness
    • you are on the field, and anything can blow you off
    • helplessness, complete nakedness
    • that feeling that you have no home and no place to live
    • that is my oasis, my snail’s house
    • slowness, lasting, it’s slow but not empty

Through discussion with the patient, through her words, delusions and gestures, and the same sensation we get confirmation of this homeopathic remedy. HG of the patient looks like the one described for – mollusks in Sankaran’s scheme – withdrawal of the hand and contraction of the fingers. I describe that like fused fists in the area of the solar plexus. The best described sensation is the response to my question about her dreams, and the fact that the similar feeling shows in the real life. She describes the panicked feeling of public performing (where she doesn’t have a possibility to withdraw and draw into a snail’s house), where she says: I have a feeling that everything went away from me, that my energy is leaking out, like I don’t have strength in my arms…like my energy stops, and then starts to drain out, I feel diffuse numbness…

About the author

Gordana Cvejic

Gordana Cvejic

Gordana Cvejic was born on April 1966, in Novi Sad, Serbia. She participated in her family’s gallery and frame working business. She lives with her husband and three children. “The big moment in my life was when I started my homeopathy studies in 2009. I’m very lucky, because I have a chance to be a student of the Classical Homeopathy School ‘Hahnemann’ in Novi Sad, a licensed training centre of the Classical Homeopathy Centre from Leuven, Belgium. Our whole family is being treated by homeopathy and I have a wish to improve people lives with homeopathy.

8 Comments

  • Hi Gordana!
    Lucky newbie! Very nice case!
    But what would happen if the patient didn’t mentioned the snail’s house. Which of all mollusks will you choose? It’s not so often the patients get to the name the source.

    “It’s easier for me to retreat and draw into a snail’s house” – is a delusion. The feeling will become clearer if she reveals how she is inside the snail’s house and then it will be much more convincing. Because all quoted HGs are made at the level of emotions and delusions. Did you get hand gesture at snail’s house? Possibly, but we do not know.

    Good luck with the case!

  • Hello Ekaterina!

    Thank you very much for such a comment. The fact that the patient mentioned-a snail’s house- made me more aware in this case. She mentioned a lot of other things which let me to give her this remedy. All of this is explained in the case.

    Best regards,
    Gordana

  • Sooooo wonderful case!!!!!
    I love the way you explained your views, thought process & analysis for the case….
    Nice understanding of the Gastropods & a classic case of the Mollusc group…..
    You matched not only the sensations, feelings….etc. but even physicals like myoma & salt disagree with the source!!!
    This shows your hard work & depth of understanding at the very deepest core…..
    Thanking you very much for such a case… It was a very nice learning experience!!

    (Nikunj Chauhan:- [email protected])

  • Thank you for the wonderful words! I’m really glad that you see my analysis as a nice learning experience. It gives purpose to my work.

    Best regards
    Gordana

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