Five years ago I was completely lost, and it’s taken me this long to find myself again.
I saw my therapist again this week, for the first time in several months. I hadn’t avoided her because of the money, even though that’s happened before, but for the simple reason that I wasn’t ready. I wasn’t ready to talk about my issues, wasn’t ready to face the mirror image of me that I couldn’t help seeing every time I looked at me.
And I realize that’s exactly what therapy is for, to face those issues, to deal with my personal image of myself, but if I wasn’t ready then I wasn’t ready. I think I’ve gotten to a maturity level where I understand my own tolerance a lot better. I know what I can take and what I can’t at this point, and I judge myself more harshly than anyone else. So I saw her when I knew I was at the right place to do so.
She did exactly what I knew she would, too. It’s just like riding a bike — therapy. There is something familiar about it that makes me feel comfortable and yet challenged at the same time. It makes me think about why I do the things I do, about how my opinions matter too. It forces me to see myself as I am, raw and unaccentuated. I am never polished, but after a therapy session I am reduced to sandstone.
Just the situation itself toes that line between acceptance and rejection because I can get comfortable there but the threat of the ticking timebomb always hangs over my head — the idea that we have only one hour to “fix” me. It reminds me that there is no “fix,” that there isn’t something so horribly wrong with me that needs to be managed. It brings it all back to me in clear backlit relief that I am my own best therapist. I just need to be reminded of it every once in a while.
I mean, who knows me better than myself? Over the course of the past five years I’ve come back to that time and again. My problem is that I tend to hide from me, hurtling down halls that lead to nowhere just because I can’t face the truth, because I can’t deal with the real me. He’s not who I have pretended to be for so long, but he’s not as horrible as I’ve felt either. He’s a human being who is striving to be honest, to do his best for society and for himself, for his family and for the possibility of more. He’s a flawed man who understands what it’s like to be at the depths but who always strives for the heights — maybe because of that.
Five years ago I was lost, and it’s taken me this long to realize it’s not five years ago anymore. It’s taken me this entire span of time to “get myself,” to realize who I am, to embrace it, and to try to stop hiding. Because hiding does more harm to me than anything else I could possibly do in my life. Because five years from now I want to look back and say this was only the beginning, that this was the start of something bigger than I could have dreamed.