Short story by Umid Ali
This young woman’s tears are flowing. Drips that moistened her face flowed from her neck to down and made her body soaked. A person who did not get wet in hot sun will soak in water with those bitter tears. The handkerchief can’t help her. When she rubbed her eyes and face two or three times, the rag became wet from the water and when she pressed it, the water splashed.
“Good heavens! What is this, huh?” the young woman winced.
She also felt pity for herself. It wasn’t the pain in her body that scared him the most; it was the tears in her eyes. Suddenly she thought that she had been diagnosed with a serious illness and she began to fear. There was no hospital she didn’t go to, no doctor she didn’t see. They all had same answer as if they had agreed with together: “You are absolutely healthy! Don’t worry about your tears, they will stop soon! ”
Unfortunately, it did not happen. The tears hadn’t stopped yet.
One day a strange thing happened. It was false for the ear that listened, true for the eye that saw. It was one of the days when the young woman desired to know why tears were flowing from her eyes was. She was alone in the house. Suddenly a doctor appeared in front of her. It happened spontaneously. The young woman jumped abruptly. Her heart almost stopped.
A middle-aged woman in a white robe, wearing cylindrical cap on her head, glasses in her eyes stared at her with a half-smile. The doctor’s clothes were clean and her looking was sincere. But the circumstance was frightening and the young woman started to shiver.
“How did you get here? How do you know I’m sick?” she said in fear.
“Your tears called me.”
“Yes. Or is it untruth that you are crying and making whole your body?”
“It is right, but it’s still strange. I didn’t call someone. I didn’t ask for help,” she said still not believing what was happening in front of her eyes.
“I have just told that your eyes called me. I appear where tears do not stop. Well, let’s get started treatment now!” she said seriously and moved quickly.
There was a white suitcase in one hand of the woman who was pretending to be a doctor. The young woman did not notice it before. She put the suitcase on the table beside bed and pushed its buttons and split it in two. The young woman was witnessing the existence of universal things in this small box. There were cotton, bandages, iodine in bottles, alcohol, various large and small needle syringes for vaccination, countless thick and thin tube bottles and more things that she had never seen before.
“Let’s soak it,” the strange doctor said, hastily putting on rubber gloves and giving the sick girl a thin, and white cloth that wasn’t even half a handful.
“What do I soak?” the young woman said dizzily.
“What do you do? Of course, your tears!”
“Are you kidding me?” the young woman said becoming angry because of the doctor’s childish action.
The strange doctor realized that the housewife’s mood had changed and the tone of her voice became lower and she began to explain:
“As you know, science and technology are developing. As in all fields, there are innovations in medicine. Just as blood is analyzed, tears are carefully checked. Its content, temperature, pressure, salinity degree… It is natural that you do not believe, even the cause of tears – sadness, joy, factors are determined. For example, well …” the doctor took a small notebook that was not very thick from her side pocket and checked it over a couple of times and then began to read aloud: “So, Omadbekova Sevara, 18 years old. Analysis of her tears: sweeter, its temperature is moderate, its pressure is moderately high, and it is influenced by the romantic letters of her boyfriend. Diagnosis: high level of happiness. Well, Kuvonchbekov Bakhtiyor, 22 years old. Analysis of his tears: salty, cold, its pressure is low, he is influenced by his girlfriend’s marrying someone else; diagnosis: unhappiness.
A vague thought came to the young woman’s mind: “Good heavens! Is it possible to determine that human’s state, spirit, mood, health or illness? Is that true, or is this woman making me a child and telling fairy tales?”
The young woman was confused. Her mind was paralyzed and her consciousness was unable to accept the unconscious things that were happening. However, she didn’t want to refuse the strange doctor’s word. Without a word she gave a few drops of tear for her. She pressed a handful of clean, delicate cloth over her eyes, soaked it in water and handed it to her again.
The doctor’s action was quick. She dripped from a cloth that was soaked with the young woman’s tears into a small glass tube. Then she took out a medium-sized, three-legged, thicker device from the shelf. There is a screen on the surface of the device and a hollow thing for placing glass tube stuck on the other side. The doctor placed a tear-filled bottle in it. The small lights on the surface of the device were green. There were a couple of muffled sounds. Then the small screen of the device flashed.
“Mmm …” the doctor said looking at the screen. “The situation is serious. Grief sank into your heart and spread to your cells. Blood flowing in your veins is not normal; this blood is full of grief. Your tears are very salty and the temperature is getting lower. Such a charming woman!
“What do you say?” the young woman said not understanding anything.
“Comrade. What do you think more? What are you upset about?” the strange doctor asked unexpectedly.
A sad thought began to gnaw the poor woman’s heart. She said to herself, “What is it that nailed me to the bed and made my tears flowing like river? What was I thinking about, what was torturing me? What makes me sad?”
“I don’t know,” she said ignorantly.
“Mmm. Your family…”
“I have two children. Now they are in school. My husband works in an office. Thankfully, our livelihood is full.”
“How your husband and children do treat you?”
“I am satisfied with my children. They give me their love. But my husband …”
“Yes. I found out your secret,” the doctor’s face brightened abruptly when the young woman couldn’t say anything and stopped. “Love is the first in the family.”
“It is true, but we can’t blame this poor man. He came from work tiredly. He can’t rest even on Sundays. There is a lot of work in the corner of the house…”
“Tell me truth, do you love each other?”
This question embarrassed the young woman. Her two cheeks flushed. If she says yes, it will be wrong, if she says no, it will be uncomfortable. The doctor reached a conclusion herself. So she started to tell clever words:
“I see. You live under the same roof, in the same house, but you are still strangers to each other. Separation, regret and grief that were gathered during the years made you in grievous and heartache. Your spouse’s pain is probably no less than yours. Usually a man does not show his tears to anyone.
She was telling truth. The young woman’s love remained in the past with a man who fell in love with her before she was married. But even now he is constantly in the painful woman’s dreams. She was living with the man who she fell in love with him in her dreams and she was living with the man who she never fell in love with in her reality. It was true. She was not happy with her husband. The husband was just a spouse to her, that’s all. Perhaps this poor man must have been living reluctantly for his children.
“This is a disease that Uzbeks infected with it. Even if we do not love each other, we will live together until we die. That is the custom,” the young woman said, lowering her head.
“Your tears are your dreams, your unfulfilled dreams, your hopes, your dreams that will never come true, your love …” the doctor diagnosed, burning under the woman’s grief. “And now I tell a true word. Only someone who has unimaginable love will shed tears like you. But no one notices this. Even sometimes the person who cries… The diagnosis I gave you is not the first and probably not the last. There are many such patients in the society. Too much.
To the young woman, whose heart was burning with love, this doctor was not just a doctor in a white robe, but an angel who knew the secrets of the heart, the nature, the character, and the world of people who fell in love. Therefore a bright woman was standing in front of her.
The strange doctor disappeared as she appeared how. Although she could not cure the mentally ill woman (in fact, there is no cure for the pain of love), she understood what her pain was.