The first one was about two years’ older than me, fresh out of university, squeaky-clean, a nice Afrikaans girl who probably still lived at home. I was forced to see her while I was in hospital after my accident, as part of my ‘rehab’. I saw her once and then explained to the head of the unit that it would be a waste of her and my time for me to discuss my ‘innermost feelings and fears’ with her. She had no concept of what I’d lost. Neither did I, at that point.
Number two, a few years’ later, was a more motherly type. Her kids were a little older than me at the time. She was sweet, gentle, and devastated by me. When she cried, I knew I needed to stop. I didn’t want to make her cry more, though. It took me months to finally ‘break up’ with her.
And the third. She made me work, it was good. She was harsh and sometimes I didn’t like her because she was brutally honest. It broke me, but I healed. Unfortunately, I couldn’t stop myself from asking her questions about her life. At R500 an hour, one shouldn’t be discussing her parent’s relationship with her boyfriend. It became an expensive morning coffee session. I had to dump her too.
Therapy. I’ve never been 100% convinced by it. I’ve always thought it was a bourgeouis thing for unsatisfied people with too much money. I kind of just want to say ‘Stop whining, sort your shit out, and get on with it, you’re a big girl,’ when people mention it. While my thoughts on it being a Rich Person Indulgence persist, I’ve seen its perks, both in myself and others, so I went, again.
As I’ve kept
whining on about saying, this year has been shit. It’s been a dark whirlwind of heartbreak after heartbreak – death, things not working out as we all wanted them to.
So I went back. And I did it for a short period, in the acute stage, when I thought that I couldn’t see any light at the end of any tunnel. It was just too many things. I could whine and whinge and gnash my teeth and work through it all with somebody who didn’t know any of the characters in my tale.
When I went last Thursday, I’d already decided it would be my final session. I could see the proverbial light, I was starting to feel like myself again, to gain back my strength. And sitting there, in her little office near the sea, I realised the simplest of truths, the perfect conclusion to this lot of therapy.
The first of the awful things that happened this year, Joe’s illness and then death, fucked me up. It turned my world upside-down. I didn’t have time to acknowledge it, though, or grieve, because it left this huge hole at work, that I just had to fill. And that occupied my mind and turned me into a stress ball monster.
It left me dealing badly with everything else that was going on, my everyday life, work, home, love, my friends, everything dissolved into a muddy pool of claustrophobia. There seemed to be no out. And only now, looking back, can I see it clearly. And I have to acknowledge therapy for helping me to see that. And I owe many, many people apologies. It feels good to be able to see the light again.
I guess I’m lucky to be as privileged as I am, to indulge myself so.*
*Again, exercising honesty blogging. Sheesh, raw is the only word for it.