my grandmother came to us with rubber mannequins, these 18" high dolls of naked bodies with lines and dots marked on them for the vital points. her acupuncture set came in a rolled zipper case, and you could practice jabbing the mannequin and fill it with spikes. she had an oversized ear, like a large slice of melon, with more star points. this one for the kidneys, this one for cold toes, this one for sadness.

there would be days i'd come home from school and find my mother at the kitchen table with needles sticking out of her arms, by herself, twisting them and laughing at the feeling. 'do you want to try? here, try. there's a gap where you can put the needle and not feel pain.'

i never did, because i never understood why it worked.

'you don't have to understand why, just know that it does.'

29 April 2018 23:32

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