Posted in Relationships - Online Dating

In The Counselor’s Office

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The counselor, Vicky had helped me many years ago when my son was little. We had many huge issues to work through and she was a strong and steady beacon, both directing me and protecting me from the jagged rocks. I was hoping she could do the same for me now.

Somehow I managed to ‘hold on’ for the three days until my scheduled appointment. I arrived at her office a few minutes early. Once I checked in, I was seated in a bright and welcoming waiting area. When Vicky appeared at the doorway, I barely recognized her. In the twenty years that had passed by, Vicky had of course aged. She appeared thin and frail, as if life had taken their toll on her too. But needing any ray of hope she could possibly throw in my direction seemed critical at the moment. I walked two steps behind her down the hall to her office.
From the doorway, it seems like any other counseling office. It seemed like MY counseling office. Comfortably lit.. not to bright not too dim. Comfortable furniture, a long fabric sofa with throw pillows and a quilt. Bookshelves filled with the expected psycho-babble. I have the same books in my own office.

She didn’t mince any words. “It’s been a very long time since I’ve seen you.” “You look terribly sad.”
That of course was the moment the flood gates opened and tears obligingly trickled down my cheeks. She handed me the half empty box of tissues from the coffee table.
She sat across from me in an easy chair with her yellow note pad and pen busily scribbling away. I knew what she was writing.. behavioral observations.. but I didn’t care. I just wanted her to work her miracle. I wanted her to make the pain stop. I wanted to skip to the part where it doesn’t hurt anymore. I didn’t want to do the grief steps. I really couldn’t tolerate one more drop of pain.

Before I spoke a single word, she knew. Quietly, she said, “tell me.”
And I did.
I told her about the park and our first kiss. I told her about the wine and the quilt, and I told her about the eagles.
I told her about my birthday and the stained glass.
Then I told her about Chicago.

When a tear leaked from the corner of her eye.. I knew we were in trouble. This was big pain. BIG.

You see, therapists don’t cry. Not in front of a patient. They can sob like a baby when the session is over. But professionally speaking.. you don’t cry in front of a patient.

Vicky had walked with me through some pretty tough stuff 20 years ago. And we got through it. I couldn’t walk this path alone. It was too hard. And no one seemed to understand. This wasn’t supposed to happen. We were falling in love. We were finding our way, individually and together. This wasn’t supposed to happen. But it did.

I told Vicky that I wasn’t sure if I was supposed to let go or hold on. If I was supposed to turn away or to be a loving support for him?

Her answer was: Let it Be.

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7 thoughts on “In The Counselor’s Office

    1. Ahhh… a good writer leaves her readers wondering, asking questions, and wanting more. If I wrote the complete story in one blog post.. it would diminish the story. It wouldn’t allow time to do its work for the reader or for me, the writer.

      The time between posts is very important. It allows us all to process what’s happened. It allows us to see and feel what the writer sees and feels through her use of words. It paints a picture.
      The time between allows the reader to question how they themselves are reacting to the story. What does it trigger within you? A memory of a similar struggle? It gives the reader time to consider how they would respond in this situation and to question the writer’s reactions and choices.

      Stay tuned… the next blog post is brewing at this moment.

      Thank you Maxi, for your continued interest and support and friendship. Many blessings to you!

      Jeannie

  1. Yes Jeannie, I have the same question as Maxi….Hugs to you my friend…it also makes me think that ‘coping’ mechanisms that have helped us before are not necessarily fitting for us when we have grown and perhaps need a new way. Xxxxx

  2. Jane,
    Its a complicated situation. And I think that each reader can identify with at least one of the people in the story.
    Coping mechanisms.. funny you should mention that. I found that many of my coping mechanisms did not work through this situation. I thought I had a pretty strong support system, but with this.. I found it sorely lacking. I had to find brand new sources of support.
    There were many coping skills that I tried.. walking, being in nature, prayer and meditation, talking with friends, exercise, being kind and gentle with myself.
    As the wound began to heal, I also began to reach out for other things. Such as movies, comedy, joining new groups, fresh starts, travel, and most importantly I began blogging.
    As healing happened at deeper levels I began purging things from my life that were holding me down. Friendships that were no longer healthy or mutual. I let go of obligations like leading cub scouts or being on committees at work or in the community. I didn’t need to have the extra burdens while I was working through all of this.
    Thank you Jane.. your loving friendship has been a life line through many difficult moments.
    Love you very much,
    Jeannie xxxxx

    1. Oh Jeannie, as your lovely friendship has been for me. It reminds me about our ‘uncharted waters’ as we are inking in our new maps…I suppose it points to us being new versions of ourselves so new ways of sailing in our waters have to be discovered. Moments of being becalmed spring to mind!! We are both moving forwards again now…I don’t think we have been becalmed either, the outward movement stopped as the inner movement occured and that takes time to show! Love you very much xxxx

  3. Why is it, that of all the parts of a person which can be broken or wounded, the heart hurts more than the rest? God in His wisdom has given us a gift so easily broken, but which also experiences such overwhelming joy and peace. Maybe to know the joy and peace, and appreciate it, we have to know the sorrow of the heart.

  4. Let it be is what I tell myself often. Especially, when things are not going my way. All I can do is remind myself that we are each here for a unique purpose, and I’ve found that sometimes hurting is a pre-requisite to fulfilling our purpose.

    -Mari

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