Angela’s mother brought her to see us when she was twenty-two months old. They
were Australian and were visiting the United States during Angela’s father’s
musical tour playing the didgeridu, a rhythmic Aboriginal instrument. Angela
was too young to be diagnosed with ADD, however had her behavior continued once
she entered school, she would have received that diagnosis.
Angela had a red rash on her face (1). She had not enjoyed one good night’s
sleep (nor had her mother!) since birth (3). When her mother weaned her at
seven months, Angela refused nay other milk. She woke in the middle of the
night crying, distressed, and disoriented. Her parents allowed her to sleep
with them. Otherwise she woke all the time crying for her mother (3). She
fought for hours against going to sleep. It was as if she were in a frenzy
every night (3). Angela’s desperate parents had even given her sleeping pills
Angela was extremely willful (3). She insisted on having things her way (3).
It was very difficult to travel with her and international travel was essential
to her parents’ lifestyle because of her father’s occupation. She screamed
during our interview with her. When she threw a fit, Angela was inconsolable
(3). Nothing satisfied her (3). Even when given a bottle of juice, she usually
refused it. She often threw herself on the floor when she didn’t get her way
(3). She became bored very easily (2).
Angela loved people. She was very lively and didn’t like to rest (3). She
lived in a busy household. There were always friends and family members coming
and going. She loved animals. She walked at nine months and ran at ten months.
She climbed on everything fearlessly. She loved to put on her mother’s
lipstick. When we inquired as to whether Angela was musical, her mother
reported that she danced to music all the time. As soon as the music came on,
she moved and danced. Even at her very young age, she sat at the piano and
played. She liked to play her father’s guitar when he held her on his knee.
People often commented on her rhythmical talents.
Angela had been diagnosed with dermatomyositis. She suffered from purplish,
red, scarred areas on her fingers which looked like tiny splinters. The
Australian physicians considered this an unusual condition for an infant.
Now take some time to study this interesting case, then turn to page
___ for the case analysis. This will probably be a very easy case for any of
you who are familiar with the homeopathic materia medica.
If you have read our previous articles of kingdoms of remedies, consider for a
moment whether Angela belongs to the mineral, plant or animal kingdom. You will
probably conclude very quickly that this lively, engaging, aggressive child has
an animal nature. Other traits of Angela which correspond to individuals
needing animal remedies are her desire to attract attention and to be
attractive (loving to put on her mother’s lipstick), love of being with others
(her pack, so to speak), and her constant tendency to climb on things.
Once you have identified that Angela is likely to need an animal remedy, you
can narrow the focus to the appropriate species of animal. Angela lacked the
suspiciousness, jealousy, and hypervigilance of the snake remedies. She fit
more closely a spider remedy. Common spider characteristics are
mischieviousness, restless, a desire to climb on furniture, quick movement, a
lively personality, a strong need to be the center of attention, and a
charming, but tricky and manipulative nature.
Which spider? Angela’s love of rhythmic music and the piano and her propensity
for dancing as well as the pervasive beat of the didgeridu with which she had
been raised, even in utero, made the selection obvious.
We gave Angela one dose of Tarentula. This medicine, made from the Spanish
spider, is for overactive children who are extremely lively, love to be the
center of attention, climb like little spiders, and love dancing and rhythmic
music. They can have tantrums and fits and often have a sneaky, manipulative
quality. The term “frenzy”, mentioned by Angela’s mother, is often true in
children needing this remedy. It is understandable that Angela, raised in an
environment of music and dance, needed this lively medicine. Another
characteristic of children needing Tarentula which we have often seen, though
not part of Angela’s case, is a desire to cut clothing and other objects,
usually with a scissors.
Some of the mental rubrics in which Tarentula is the ONLY remedy and which
give you a real flavor of the remedy are: “Cursing, swearing; threatening
destruction and death”; “Destructiveness; cunning”; “Excitement, excitable;
dancing, singing and weekping, with music, from”; “Feigning; looking to others
in distress”; “Hysteria; music ameliorates”; “Insanity, pulls her own hair”;
“Mania, madness; destructive efforts, sudden foxlike, requiring utmost
vigilance, followed by laughter and apologies”; “Quarrelsomeness, scolding;
hysteric mania, at beginning of”;
“Shrieking, screaming, shouting; laughter, after”;
Striking; children, in; other, when not observed”; and “Tears; things; books,
Angela’s mother called from Australia five weeks after she took the medicine.
Angela had no further tantrums or extreme moodiness, “just the odd two year old
stuff”. Her behavior was nothing compared to before she took the Tarentula. She
was much more easily distracted when she became upset. She jumped up and down
occasionally when her mother said “no”, and that was it. She was quite a bit
easier to entertain. She could sit in a car now, which had been a major problem
previously. Her teeth grinding, which her mother forgot to mention in the first
interview, was ninety percent improved. The redness and scarring on her hands
was also better. When we explained to Angela’s mother about the medicine which
we had given her, she added that Angela tended to nibble on their ears all the
time. Prior to the homeopathy, she had tapped on everything, teased, and acted
very mischievously. These behaviors had also improved. “Looks like Miss
Spider’s working”, her mother commented.
Angela needed one more dose of the Tarentula five months later because some
of her symptoms had returned, though to a much lesser degree than before the
homeopathic treatment. Her mother communicated to me that Angela’s
dermatologist was quite surprised that the redness and inflammation of her
fingers had improved dramatically.
Dr. Judyth Reichenberg-Ullman and Dr. Robert Ullman are licensed
naturopathic physicians and are board certified in homeopathy. They are
President and Vice President of the International Foundation for Homeopathy
where they teach homeopathy to licensed health care professionals. They
practice in Edmonds, WA at 131 3rd Ave., N., Edmonds, WA 98020 and can be
reached at (206) 774-5599. Their new book, The Patient’s Guide to Homeopathic
Medicine, is now available.