The Symptoms? Strange. The Cause? Something Normal!
Dr. Ramune’s treatments are unusual, to say the least. Sometimes he offers a ‘stop-gap’ treatment that is not a cure, and sometimes he asks a patient to collect the popcorn that sprouts from their head. Even though the symptoms that his patients endure are unlike any other illness, the root causes of the ailments he cures are surprisingly normal. As you watch Kai Byoui Ramune (Dr. Ramune -Mysterious Disease Specialist-), you will see mental health issues that most or all people experience at some point in their life. Today, here are a few of those that stood out to the folks at Honey’s Anime.
Condiment Tears and Emotional Repression
Dr. Ramune finds himself faced with a very unusual client. Koto is a child actress who usually saves her tears for the silver screen. Unfortunately, the patient cannot cry at all because instead of tears, she cries condiments! Sometimes soy sauce, ketchup, or mayonnaise the condiment differs based on the situation.
With this case, Dr. Ramune’s patient not only put off crying, but they also put their emotions on the back burner. Instead of speaking her mind, Koto accepted the child-acting career that her mother planned, even though that was not her wish. The more that she represses these feelings, the longer she seems to go with condiment teardrops. Through a special tea that causes Koto to speak her mind, Koto decides that asserting her needs and addressing her emotions is the path she needs to take.
Popcorn Head and the Removal of Self-Expression
Aona is the friend of Dr. Ramune’s assistant. When they meet, popcorn pops out of Aona’s head, and it catches Dr. Ramune’s attention. Aona believes that his mother is in the hospital and sick because she was unhappy with his excessive creativity. He forces himself not to be creative, and it seems to both make him unhappy and cause the sprouting of popcorn. As the popcorn sprouts, it disappears, and for some reason, Aona is sad.
There are a lot of things to unpack with Popcorn Head. Due to lots of stress and believing that he is the reason his mother is in the hospital, Aona tries to change who he is to make his parents happy. To oblige his parents, Aona pushes down those urges of creativity, and instead of bringing him joy, it becomes a source of pain. When Aona realizes that he has a genuine need for self-expression and this self-care is not a “want.” The family talks through it and moves forward, but Aona is aware that art and creativity are necessary to remain happy and healthy.
Potsticker Ears and the Loss of a Child
A child prays for his mother every day and Dr. Ramune asks if he can assist. It turns out that the mother has grown potstickers that sometimes close over her ears. Dr. Ramune believes that the mother has developed these potsticker ears to avoid hearing the bad news. They currently prevent the mother from facing the sad reality that one of her two children has been murdered. The mother begins not to see her child that is still living and can only focus on her child who died. This begins to break the family apart, and that’s where Dr. Ramune comes in.
In his treatment, the grieving mother must acknowledge her son, and when she chooses to know and love and care for him, she has to acknowledge much more. With choosing to love the son that still lives, the mother must accept that her other son has died. It is a challenging and cold reality that the mother faces, but it allows her to love and comfort her family and have happiness again.
If you or a loved one is suffering from the violent death of a child, please note that immediate grief counseling is available through POMC (Parents of Murdered Children) by calling 1-888-818-7662.
Since good mental health is something we all need in our lives, we hope that Dr. Ramune has been a good reminder to make that a priority in everyday life. Though it can be hard to assess your emotional needs and harder still to assert yourself, doing what is right for your health should be a priority for everyone! How will you practice some self-care next? Movie night? Massage? Manga? Let us know in the comments!