I don’t often know what it is I’m there for. I know overall. I have issues or simply unhappiness. Life isn’t what or where I want it to be, and I need someone to help make it right. Of course you’ve been telling me that’s my job, but in reality “me” is made up of me and you because I’ve been talking to myself way too long already. Not to mention my spouse, mother, brother, best friend, etc. I don’t like talking to myself anymore so I’m talking to you. Actually, I just need help and you’re giving it. I’m paying you of course, or my health plan is, but I recognize that you also do this because you care. You enjoy what you do, and so I feel I’m with someone who cares about this for more than the dollar.
So I talk about stuff. Maybe about my mom or my wife or my job or lack of one. I’ve tried to do this or that. I’m hoping for this. I’m expecting that. This frustrates the heck out of me. I should do better here. Why didn’t I do that? When is life going to change? You just sit there and listen. You nod your head. Or not. You ask questions. You probe. Perhaps you do what I was taught when I trained for the Samaritans suicide hotline: you angle for the pain, go for what you sense is the root of the misery. Of course I may not help you with that. Believe me, experiencing the pain is not easy and not looked forward to, even if it is ultimately why I’m there.
And when I find the cause of the pain, I’m surprised. I’m not surprised at the identity of the cause or even that I didn’t think of it until now. It’s just that when it hits me it hits me fresh and freshness is by nature surprising. THIS is what was wrong. THIS is what’s been missing. I’ve taken hundreds of thousands of incremental steps away from this basic need for happiness, and I just now figured it out. Extraordinary! I’m relieved. Really, I am. Because I got control of it.
That’s it in a nutshell. Control. I don’t want to use “control” in some sort of yuppified phraseology, where I have to be in control of every aspect of my life, but rather as a step in maturity. Real, honest-to-goodness maturity, maturity that I staked out myself rather than what was mandated for me by the parent I didn’t trust or the wife I didn’t trust. Trust was the key for me. You knew I had to trust myself. And you helped me get there.
It’s not like that’s the end of it, but for today, nice job.